Chef Norman Van Aken to bring cooking school, restaurant to Wynwood

Restaurant will span 5,500 square feet while cooking school will be 2,200 square feet

Apr.April 19, 2016 01:30 PM

Updated, April 20, 1 p.m.: Bring out the knives and sauté pans – chef Norman Van Aken is heading to Wynwood.

The James Beard award-winning chef will open a restaurant and cooking school at East End Capital’s Wynwood Arcade, a retail and restaurant project with tenants that include men’s clothing store Bonobos, fashion retailer Muse, the Salty Donut and furniture store Patrizia Bozzi Design.

Van Aken is leasing a 5,500-square-foot restaurant space with a rooftop bar and lounge at the arcade, an adaptive re-use mixed-use development. There, he’ll open a Caribbean and Latin American-influenced restaurant along with co-owners Candace Walsh and Susan Buckley, who have worked with Ace Hotels, Il Mulino and the Spotted Pig.

In the Kitchen with Norman Van Aken will span 2,200 square feet and offer programs that teach cuisines and cooking techniques, according to a press release.

Metro 1 brokered the Wynwood lease, according to a spokesperson. Tony Arellano, executive vice president at the commercial brokerage, is the exclusive listing agent for the project at 50 Northwest 24th Street, where asking rents have averaged $55 triple-net. Arellano told The Real Deal that Van Aken signed a 10-year lease for his cooking school and restaurant.

The Wynwood Arcade will open “any day now,” Arellano said. Available space ranges from 700 square feet to 2,500 square feet.

Van Aken originally had plans to open in the Kitchen at the Vagabond Hotel in Miami’s MiMo neighborhood. Walsh told The Real Deal that the Wynwood location replaces the MiMo school and restaurant. “Basically, the actual building permitting was too delayed,” Walsh said. “We’d been waiting for two years.”

As planned, the school will feature one kitchen with 16 work stations, Walsh confirmed. Classes will range from about $75 to $125. She said they’re aiming to open the school and lounge in September, and the restaurant a month later.

East End, led by Jonathon Yormak and David Peretz, paid $11 million along with Yellow Side Ventures for the entire block on the west side of North Miami Avenue, between 24th Street and 25th Street, in January 2015. The purchase included a separate parcel across the street. And nearby, East End is planning a mixed-use apartment development. That project, 240 Northwest 25th Street, will include 275 apartments, 30,000 square feet of retail and 350 parking spaces.

Van Aken currently owns Norman’s at the Ritz-Carlton Grand Lakes in Orlando.

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