Pinewood Forest reveals new streetscape, announces first restaurant

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Streetscape views of portions of the planned Village Square area at Pinewood Forest in Fayetteville. Renderings/Nequette Architecture.

Pinewood Forest has released renderings of a portion of the 25-acre downtown Village Square that will form the town center of the 234-acre commercial and residential development along Veterans Parkway. Groundbreaking is expected in the near-term, with some offerings opening in late 2019. Also announced was the first restaurant at the Fayetteville development, BRAISE.

“With an informal European vibe and distinctly Southern design, Village Square will be the heart of activity and action with a boutique and select service hotel, curated restaurant offerings, independent retail shops and galleries, a collaborative office suite and the 60,000 sq. ft. Piedmont Wellness Center opening late 2019. Filled with outdoor cafes and retail shops, it will be abuzz with residents, guests, energy and movement,” said 360 Media representative Tara Murphy.

Numerous homes, of the 600 planned, are under construction or are already occupied. Also in the works are 100 townhomes and 600 apartments, along with a wealth of commercial space.

“We are building a vibrant town center that will serve as the pulse of the community and feature some of the best food in the South,” said Pinewood Forest President Rob Parker. “There will be shops and restaurants all along the ground floor, creating an incredible walkable experience. Everything here will be unique and make Pinewood a destination unlike any other.”

Pinewood Forest on Feb. 20 announced its first Village Square restaurant, BRAISE. The restaurant concept will play host to James Beard grant-winner Tanya Jimenez and her husband, Michael Le. Focusing on locally-sourced and organic ingredients, the rustic yet refined eatery will provide a dining experience featuring European, New American and Asian influences, with a hint of Southern charm, said Murphy.

“It is a special day for all of us here at Pinewood Forest. We’ve wanted to share what’s been happening behind the scenes for some time now, and we are excited to welcome Chefs Jimenez and Le to our fold,” said Parker. “This announcement sets the tone for the level of culinary talent that residents and the surrounding area can expect of our downtown.”

Chef Jimenez is a graduate of the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, N.Y. and brings with her a rich background of culinary experience. Her resume includes working for Chef Gordon Ramsay in New York City and currently under the tutelage of Chef Anne Quatrano and her Star Provisions restaurant group (Bacchanalia, Star Provisions Market and Cafe and Floataway Cafe) as she completes her Women in Culinary Leadership Program Grant from the James Beard Foundation, Murphy said.

Honing his culinary skills across the United States and Europe, Chef Le has worked as a consultant for One Hotel in Miami, PLNTHOUSE, a local restaurant in Peachtree City and a family owned coffee shop in Senoia. As of late, both have been experimenting with a pop-up concept called Mushi Ni in East Atlanta’s We Suki Suki. While BRAISE is a collaboration, Chef Jimenez will lead the kitchen, and Chef Le will handle the day-to-day operations, said Murphy.

“Pinewood Forest’s town center is the perfect location for us,” said Chef Le. “We are excited to partner with the team behind Pinewood Forest and bring our vision of BRAISE to life.”

“Michael and I have been preparing for a restaurant like this, and we feel like that time is now,” said Chef Jimenez. “It’s why we love the name BRAISE, not only is it one of our favorite techniques, everything that is good takes time.”

BRAISE is expected to open in late 2019. The intimate space will seat up to 30 guests while featuring an at-home atmosphere, creating an approachable and inviting environment. An open kitchen will allow guests a sneak peek of what is behind their unique dining experience, while feeling like they have stopped by a friend’s house for an evening out. BRAISE will be open during the week for lunch and dinner. On other days, the venue will host a number of community events including a variety of educational and culinary classes, Murphy said.

“Over the coming months we will begin sharing culinary announcements complemented by unique retail, artisans and other Village Square amenities,” said Pinewood Forest Project Director Bill Lynch. “Through these announcements our story and vision will come alive and we’re so excited about creating a place unlike any other in Atlanta or the Southeast.”

When it comes to the commercial area, the downtown Village Square area of Pinewood Forest will feature a boutique and select service hotel, curated restaurant offerings, independent retail shops and galleries, a collaborative office suite and the Piedmont Wellness Center opening late 2019, said Murphy.

Murphy said approximately 50 homes ranging from $300,000 to $2 million are underway or recently completed with new residents that have moved in since December. Every home either fronts on or is located within one block of a park, and the community is the first residential community of its scale in the United States with every home utilizing both geothermal HVAC technology and 1-gigabit internet fiber.

For long-time readers of Pinewood Forrest stories on The Citizen, it should be noted that the development has dropped an “r” in its spelling. The development is now known as Pinewood Forest.