Juniper Cafe, a modern Vietnamese cafe and bakery from Ron Hsu, Aaron Phillips, and Carl Van Tyle Gilbert, will open for breakfast and dinner on Wednesday, December 15 in the Westside Village, at 2260 Marietta Blvd NW, Suite 100, according to a press release Friday.
Hsu and Phillips are chef-partners behind Lazy Betty in Candler Park, and Van Tyle Gilbert is the restaurant’s general manager and beverage director.
The casual restaurant will offer breakfast and dinner at the opening, with lunch to come, and feature Vietnamese specialties, like pho, noodle salad (bún), banh mis, summer rolls, and house-made sausages, as well as made-from-scratch pastries and Coconut Shaved Ice — razor thin shaved ice infused with coconut and topped with mochi, fresh strawberries & mango, plus the option to add a scoop of pineapple ice cream.
Timothy Rufino, formerly a senior line cook at Lazy Betty, will helm the kitchen as executive chef. View the full menu here.
Gilbert will manage a full beverage program, with a focus on cocktails incorporating Vietnamese flavors and ingredients, wines from across the globe, sake, Lunar hard seltzer, makgeolli, soju, sochu, baiju and great beer from Asia. A non-alcoholic beverage menu will offer guests craft natural sodas like Kumquat & Yuzu soda with lime, light agave, Thai basil & black pepper, and Acerola soda with black tea, lemon, dark agave & lavender, plus a robust coffee, espresso, and tea selection for all-day imbibing.
From local architecture and interior design firm PRAXIS3, the restaurant’s design will include modern takes on traditional forms with stepped ceiling elements reminiscent of the terraced Vietnamese countryside and a patio structure that will incorporate interpretations of time-honored details from historic Vietnamese homes. Two patio spaces will include seating as well as an outdoor takeout window for pastries, coffee, and to-go food and drinks to enjoy on the go or around the property.
Named for Hsu’s niece, Juniper Cafe is also a nod to the popular Midtown Atlanta street.
An Atlanta native, Ron grew up working in his family’s Chinese restaurants. He was formally trained in French technique during his culinary education and served as executive chef of Le Colonial, the French-Vietnamese restaurant in NYC, in addition to working as creative director at Chef Eric Ripert’s Michelin-starred Le Bernardin, where he met Phillips. Phillips has also spent time in the kitchen at NYC’s Bouley, Jean-Georges’ The Mark Restaurant and The Four Seasons Hotel and at Atlas Restaurant in Atlanta.
With the opening of Juniper Cafe, Phillips now serves as Lazy Betty’s executive chef and acts as Juniper Cafe’s corporate chef; Hsu is the culinary director for the two restaurants, and Gilbert is the beverage director for both concepts. The same team will also open Humble Pie, a family-friendly neighborhood restaurant offering chef-driven American dishes, at The Interlock (1115 Howell Mill Rd, Suite P100) in spring 2022.