James Beard Award-winner to set Midtown restaurant

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Nashville just landed its third James Beard Award-winning chef. - Nashville Business Journal

RJ Cooper, who received the prestigious award while working at Washington, D.C.'s Vidalia in 2007, is preparing to open a "modern American brasserie" named Henley this spring in Midtown, according to a news release.

“There are so many excellent food resources in Tennessee and throughout the South that I am looking forward to incorporating into the menu at Henley,” Cooper said in the release.

Henley will be located in Aertson Midtown, the $100 million mixed-use development across from Vanderbilt University, alongside an upscale New York City bar, a "modern Mexican" restaurant and a 180-room full-service Kimpton hotel. Henley's space in the building is being designed " to evoke the comfort of a private home," according to the release.

Kimpton will own the restaurant.

“Nashville is an incredibly spirited place and Midtown is a particularly exciting part of this city, which is why we decided to open our first restaurant here,” Avi Rathnakumar, regional director of restaurant and bar operations for Kimpton Hotels & Restaurants, said in the release.

The restaurant will offer a snack trolley at the start of each meal, the release said, which will allow guests to choose a la carte starters to be prepared for them table-side. The restaurant's cuisine will be "inventive" and "inspired by the flavors of the South," according to the release.