Nicolas Bour set the direction for the Farmhouse at Serenbe more than 10 years ago. Now, the acclaimed chef who briefly worked under Gunter Seeger at the Ritz-Carlton Buckhead and opened the much-loved Iris restaurant in East Atlanta in the early 2000s, is returning to Serenbe to give the existing restaurants a leg up—and open a couple more. He’ll be working with the chef de cuisines at the Farmhouse, the Hill, and Blue Eyed Daisy Bakeshop to fine-tune their menus, as well as lead the opening of Halsa, a health-conscious restaurant opening in the fall, and a yet-unnamed casual Italian spot opening next year.
“Simplicity is the key. You’ll never see molecular gastronomy here,” says Bour, who most recently was the executive chef at the Gates Hotel South Beach in Miami and competed on Food Network’s Beat Bobby Flay. Below, he explains what he has planned for each of Serenbe’s restaurants:
Bour aims to instill his French country roots into the Southern cuisine at the Farmhouse. “It’ll have the same use of the farm’s ingredients, but more refined,” he says.
Despite the restaurant’s tiny kitchen, everything will be made to order. “Rather than braising a pork shoulder in advance, we’ll have a pork chop,” he says. Other new menu items may include foie gras torchon, wagyu carpaccio, tomato tarts, and steak frites.
“If you were driving through the rolling hills in the South of France and saw a cute inn and decided to stop for dinner,” he says, “I’d love for [the Farmhouse] to be that type of place.”
While the Farmhouse is designed to be a destination, the Hill, should have something for everyone, Bour says. “It’s somewhere you can eat three times a week,” with pizza, burgers, steak, and salad. “I’m here to do whatever it takes to make it better.” Previously, the Hil (one “L”) was led by chef Hilary White, who stepped down last December to open a restaurant in Senoia.
Blue Eyed Daisy Bakeshop
The bakeshop offers breakfast items, salads, sandwiches, and desserts, and that won’t change—but the exact menu offerings will. Bour plans to increase the focus on sandwiches, inspired by La Sandwicherie in Miami Beach. He hasn’t started menu development yet, but hopes to include a French salami and brie sandwich, as well as one with tuna and apples.
Meaning “good health” in Swedish, Halsa will open in the fall in Serenbe’s new wellness neighborhood, Mado. Designed by Smith Hanes Studio, it will feature tile and brass accents and a cream color scheme.
Bour describes the menu as vegetable-forward, focusing on superfoods and ancient grains. It will serve breakfast, lunch, and dinner; the first two via counter service. There will be a full bar and a patio.
Unnamed Italian restaurant
Located in the space next to the Hill, a new Italian restaurant will open in 2019, serving pizza, small plates, and pasta specials. “I think of it as a trattoria,” Bour says, with beer and wine on tap.
Prepared meals, pop-ups, and classes
Also at Serenbe, chef Brian Moll (formerly of La Tavola) is launching a series of pop-up dinners and culinary classes. He’ll also be offering a prepared meal service for locals, starting this month.