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Ben’s Friends Increases Visibility of F&B Support Group For Addiction

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Cedar Room
Brianna Stello
Erin Perkins is the editor of Eater Carolinas.

Two of the biggest names in the Charleston food scene, Indigo Road’s Steve Palmer and Charleston Grill’s Mickey Bakst, came together to help food and beverage workers who may be struggling with drug and alcohol abuse, and now they are reminding the community that Ben’s Friends is here to help. Bakst sent an email out over the weekend urging chefs and restaurateurs to hang informational posters near time clocks, where employees can see it.

This comes after the very public confession from Sean Brock that he is currently in recovery from alcohol abuse.

Both Palmer and Bakst are very open about their past addictions while working in the industry, and they want to help others who might be struggling. "We're not here to point the finger at people," Bakst told City Paper, "We're just here to be a place to go to provide greater awareness and acceptance of sobriety."

After Palmer lost close friend and chef Ben Murray following a struggle with addiction, Palmer felt a strong need to start support group Ben’s Friends. Bakst and Palmer, along with a few anonymous colleagues, meet at the Cedar Room (701 East Bay St.) every Sunday at 11:00 a.m. and at Indaco (526 King St.) every Thursday at noon. Everyone is welcome to attend, and no one is required to participate.

For more information on Ben’s Friends, reach out to Bakst at or Palmer at

Steve Palmer and Mickey Bakst Start F&B Support Group For Drug and Alcohol Addiction [CP]
Sean Brock Opens Up About Rehab and Sobriety to NYT [ECHS]