Milford native uses design education to open Savannah potato restaurant

Milford native Andrew Wanamaker combined his education from the Savannah College of Art and Design with his love for comfort food to create a restaurant called Spudnik in Savannah, Ga.

While helping a friend clean out his own new business space a few years ago, Wanamaker came across an empty box of frozen, twice-baked potatoes. Wanamaker craved this comfort food staple, but couldn’t find them in the Savannah area.

The simplicity and popularity of the potato sprouted a restaurant concept, one so appealing that while finishing his studies at Savannah College of Art and Design, Wanamaker began designing and refining it. He scouted restaurant locations and began construction to create a space that resonated emotionally.

Spudnik combines high-end ingredients with top quality potatoes. Customers come to the restaurant to try a wide variety of combinations from the “Sunrise” potato with a fried egg, chives, sour cream, cheddar cheese and butter, to the “Sugar Momma” sweet potato served with toasted almonds, cinnamon, compound butter and marshmallows.

Wanamaker designed a place where people felt comfortable. He determined Spudnik should have a dining room featuring rich materials, sustainable practices, and a scalable business model to accommodate growth.

USA Today listed it among the top 10 “Best Spots for Late-Nite Dining in Savannah.”

“Spudnik, located on the west end of Broughton Street in Savannah's Historic District, is a small eatery dedicated to the art of the potato,” the write-up states. “Though the potatoes are the standout feature at Spudnik, the restaurant's cool floor made entirely of pennies deserves special mention.”

A graduate of Jonathan Law High School, Wanamaker is the son of Chris and Sandra Wanamaker. He said he would love to open a Spudnik one day in Milford.