Monday Meditations with Wine – Isaiah Zay Jones

Monday Meditations with Wine is a weekly live interview series on BRAVO!’s Facebook page highlighting beverage and hospitality professionals and their individual efforts to grow and evolve Southern Hospitality Industry. We are all about community and getting to know our neighbors, so grab a glass of wine and join us every Monday at 6 PM on BRAVO!’s Facebook Page!

For the month of June, each guest will have one very important thing in common, they are Fathers. Chuck will focus on how they are able to balance their jobs, families, passions, and life while navigating fatherhood. On this Monday’s episode, Chuck will be interviewing Isaiah “Zay” Jones.

Isaiah “Zay” Jones is a sommelier in OKC. He is a graduate of the University of Central Oklahoma and earned his MBA at Oklahoma Christian University. As the buyer and floor Somm at Mahogany Prime in Downtown OKC, Zay shows enthusiasm and passion for educating his staff and enhancing the wine culture in OKC. In addition to being one of Oklahoma’s brightest emerging beverage professionals, he is a father of two. He balances his career aspirations and family all while maintaining his “skinny-buff” physique by playing basketball and intense workouts.  Not without a sense of humor though if you need a dose of joy while scrolling find him on Instagram @zaysensei for humor in wine and maybe catch him spending some quality time with the family!

Monday Meditations with Wine – Special Guest Taariq David 2/21/22 – Correction

Monday Meditations with Wine is a weekly live interview session on BRAVO!’s Facebook page highlighting hospitality, culinary, and beverage industry professionals from the American South. This weekly series is meant to shine a light on the enthusiastic, passionate, professionals in the south blazing trails in their respective fields. We are telling the stories of the south’s brightest in the hospitality industry.

So, grab your favorite glass of wine and experience southern hospitality from your living room, office, dorm room, or where ever you please every Monday at 6 PM CST.

In this week’s episode Chuck will be interviewing Taariq David who hails from Washington, DC, and currently calls Water Valley, MS home with his wife and four daughters. Taariq David has over 25 years of restaurant experience in the kitchen and dining room. He has served as everything from busser to General Manager. Taariq David is the definition of a true entrepreneur and has excelled as a 2021 member of the Big Bad Business Lab. The Lab is funded by Yoknapatawpha Arts Council (YAC) and in part through grants from the National Endowment for the Arts Our Town program and the Mississippi Arts Commission. The Lab offers entrepreneurs a place to self-define their goals and professional development support to achieve these goals.

David owns David Hospitality Services and is the co-founder of Hospitality Bruhs. These are restaurant consulting businesses that also focus on cocktails. These businesses are designed to teach locals how to replicate restaurant-quality food and cocktails at home. David is most excited about his small business because it focuses on empowering others while being something that he has created from start to finish.

Taariq started his own business due to restaurants shutting down during COVID. Creating his own vision through cocktails and food was a dream of his that he had wanted to do for a while, and with the onset of covid, he was able to accomplish his dream. Another reason for starting his own business was so that he did not have to continue living paycheck to paycheck. Taariq is currently working with Fox Sports Center and is being featured in their segment Ultimate College Roadtrip. Check out Taariq’s latest cocktails and cuisine at @Taariqdavid or @hospitalitybruhs on Instagram!

Watch Live Monday 2/14/22 on Facebook Live: https://fb.me/e/1YPIwzUfA

Interested in learning more about Taariq David check out these great blogs and videos as well as his social media.




https://vimeo.com/512363181 – Business in a Virtual World

http://www.invitationmag.com/post/creative-cocktails-featuring-taariq-david – Creative Cocktails: Featuring Taariq David

Watch the Facebook Live Replay:

Our “12 Days Of Giving” Gift Card Sale Is Here!

The “12 Days Of Giving” Are BACK!

Buy 3, Get 1 FREE, and WE Give 10% To Charity

They say it is better to give than receive…  but what if you could receive when you give?

You can with the annual BRAVO!, Broad Street, and Sal & Mookie’s 3-in-1 gift card sale! Buy 3 cards, get 1 FREE, and 10% goes to your favorite local charity! This once-a-year sale is on now through November 20th, so don’t miss it!

Order online at 3in1giftcard.com or visit any of our three restaurants to buy in person. Buy 3, get 1 free, no limits… give as many as you wish…get as many as you want! All while helping local charities. The BRAVO!, Broad Street, Sal & Mookie’s 3-in-1 gift card truly is the gift that keeps on giving!

Sale ends November 20th, no purchase limit, visit 3in1giftcard.com to take advantage of the best deal in town NOW!

Launching Lunchtime Favorites- For $11!

Lunch Combos Are Now At BRAVO!

You’ve seen the beautiful new interior, tried the new steak, and of course had your favorite pasta or pizza by now. But have you seen one of our biggest new additions? We now have Daily Lunch Combos Tuesday through Friday for $11!

That’s right- you can enjoy the perfect pairing (and size) of pasta, salad, soup, or sandwich at one of your favorite Jackson restaurants for just $11. Check out the possibilities:

Lunch Combos

Pasta & Salad

a half portion of linguine and meatballs, fettuccine alfredo, or fettuccine in pesto with your choice of caesar or mesclun greens salad

Soup & Salad

a bowl of tomato-basil soup or soup of the day with your choice of caesar or mesclun greens salad

Half Sandwich & Salad or Soup

a half of ANY of our lunch menu sandwiches served with your choice of caesar or mesclun greens salad, or a cup of tomato-basil soup or soup of the day

We Are Back And Better Than Ever!

BRAVO! Has Re-Opened

Come Celebrate Our Beautiful New Look With Us!

It’s no secret that we, as one of Jackson’s favorite places to eat and celebrate, have had a lot going on the last month. Since August 28th, we’ve been temporarily closed while undergoing a stunning transformation. On September 26th, we completed the renovation, and BRAVO! reopened with a private Grand Unveiling celebration.

New settings for the tables bring a polished look at night.

Why the complete remodel? A few years ago, our structural foundation began a “parting of the ways. “The kitchen wanted to move to Byram, while the dining room wanted to stay here in Jackson,” quipped Jeff Good, BRAVO! co-owner.  “A support beam under the pizza oven was giving out. [Jeff and I] knew something would have to be done. But we didn’t know how or with what money,” says Dan Blumenthal, Chef and co-owner. When the new ownership of Highland Village approached Jeff and Dan to work out a generous plan to fix the foundation that would require the restaurant to close for a month, the two knew they had to make the most of it.

“When it became clear we would have to close for an extended period,  we knew we would definitely remodel our kitchen. We had been talking about it for years. So we enlisted the help of two excellent individuals and their well-respected firms to help us manage the project: Billy Ware of Mid-State Construction and Katie Browning of CDFL Architects,” Jeff explained. Lee Shain of Highland Village helped create a project management schedule and provided a central point of administrative contact to ensure all parties were on the same page.

With the structural project set, and the kitchen remodel plans in place, Dan and Jeff realized that closing for an extended period just to fix parts of the restaurant none of our guests would ever see just wasn’t good enough.  So, they decided to up the ante.  “We knew we couldn’t be closed for a month and disrupt our guests’ experience without giving them something. It was clear that we needed to overhaul the dining room too,” says Jeff.


That’s where the incredible design team of Erik Kegler and Brennan Hovell of Erik Kegler Interiors, owners of EK Home came in to help. BRAVO! needed an all new, modern look that would honor the welcoming and relaxing atmosphere people love— it still needed to feel like BRAVO! – but it needed new life and vitality.  The design they created does just that, but of course, there were a couple obstacles.

“Not going to beat around the bush. We had no money, it was all going into the foundation and the kitchen, but we wanted to do something incredible with the dining room.  We had been saving money for two years in preparation for the work, but we were still short.  So, we came up with an ingenious plan to raise the funds— we held a celebratory event called “The Closer” and auctioned off all our furniture and fixtures.  We also auctioned off in-home dining experiences to be held during the shutdown.  The party was a huge success with 270 people in attendance, and we sold every single stick of furniture, every light, even the mint bowl by the front door!” Jeff shared.   Dan and Jeff worked with Eleni Sanford of Trustmark Bank to fill the funding gap and the budget was set.

Warm sunlight highlights the gorgeous modern artwork now hung around BRAVO!

With all the plans and budgets and designs set, there was still one huge concern left to address, the most important one of all – the BRAVO! team. Many of BRAVO!’s staff have been with them for years and are like family, and it did not sit right with Jeff and Dan to leave them out of work for a month. “So we decided to pay them— which is pretty much unheard of, but it really worked out because we needed a construction crew to make the front house remodel happen so… it is thanks to their hard work that you see this fantastic new space. They were our crew—we literally couldn’t have done it without them. Ripping out sheetrock, laying floors, putting in ceiling tiles, sanding, scraping, painting, everything was done by our staff. And they were happy to be here with us! It is an absolutely incredible family we have here,” Jeff continues, “It was a once-in-a-lifetime experience for me to unplug and spend a full month of my life focused on one thing – one project – and do it with people I have nothing but the utmost in respect for.  They are awesome!”

Erik Kegler was impressed too, “To take an untrained crew and in a month, get them to these results is stunning. I couldn’t be more proud. We have very high expectations for the quality of work that goes into our designs and they met them.”

These results could not have happened without strong leadership. Every day from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. Jeff was at BRAVO! working with the crew and coaching them through what to do. “It was absolutely incredible. He is absolutely dedicated to this place and these people and it could not have happened without him,” Erik said at The Unveiling dinner.

Now, when you walk into BRAVO! the demi-wall facing the front door is gone creating a more inviting entrance while enlarging the bar and lounge. The iconic Lynn Green Root mural is still there, but gone are the old white ceiling tiles and green 90s paint and upholstery. Everything has been softened to soothing, modern shades of blues, grays, and tans creating a crisp yet calm atmosphere. Music plays over an updated sound system- no tinny tunes anymore!- and the lighting has had a complete overhaul with stunning, starburst-like light fixtures and gold and white lanterns. New artwork adorns the walls and even the bathroom doors have had the royal treatment with bold new graphics.

New Lounge, Classic Mural

Some of the biggest improvements cannot be seen. Behind the bar hides a sleek cruvinet, allowing BRAVO! sommelier, Lesley McHardy, to feature a rotating selection of high end wines by the glass without any fear of oxidation. And the kitchen has undergone a massive improvement. The remodel not only fixed the foundation, but allowed the BRAVO! team to create a whole new, more efficient layout, while leveling floors, updating management offices, and replacing and refurbishing equipment.

Along with the gorgeous new interior, BRAVO! also updated their menu, restyling it to match their more contemporary look. “Don’t worry! Most of your favorites are still here. We did cut a few items to make room for a couple exciting new additions that we think you’ll really like- like a new ribeye steak and some great new appetizers. And a few things have been renamed to reflect their classic Italian roots but it is 80% the same. If you’re looking for something in particular, your server will be happy to help you find it or a new favorite,” explains Susan Farris, Marketing Manager.

To complete the all-new look, BRAVO! now has a new website as well. Farris continued, “We’ve always been cutting edge— we’ve been on the web since the internet started, so it was definitely time for an update. It was important for us to have something modern and food-forward to enhance our guests’ experience even before they arrive. Our new website is fully mobile compatible and makes browsing the menu and seeing daily specials on your phone a breeze.”

Thanks to all these improvements, BRAVO! is now well-positioned to remain a major competitor in the Jackson food scene for another twenty-three years. But BRAVO! has always been about more than just serving great food—it’s about connection. It is a place where people can come together, savor the moment, and make memories. Jeff sums it up best, “BRAVO! is more than a restaurant. It is an extraordinary experience. It is in the memories you make here with us; we look forward to continuing that tradition with you for many more years to come.”

The gold and white lanterns bring a nice glow to the dining room.

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Gather. Relax. Savor.

We have proudly served delicious Italian food in a relaxed and welcoming atmosphere in the heart of Jackson since 1994. And with 20+ years of Wine Spectator awards, our wines are just as good as our food.

Connect with BRAVO!

 Phone: (601) 982-8111

 Social Media:     

 Email: info@bravobuzz.com

4500 Interstate 55 Frontage Rd, Highland Village Suite 244, Jackson, MS 39211

© 1994 - 2022 Mangia Bene Restaurant Management Group Inc. All Rights Reserved.

All Photos Courtesy of Tom Beck Photography. All Rights Reserved.