American cuisine is focus of four40 kitchen + bar

New restaurant at Avenue Forsyth serves ambiance, food, service



CUMMING, Ga. — At the newest restaurant to launch at the Avenue Forsyth, a few changes have amounted to a whole new experience.

The four40 kitchen + bar atmosphere, including its lounge music and graffiti-inspired canvases adorning the walls, offers an uninhibited sense of modern meets classic.

In the kitchen, Chef Kirk Biondi prepares what has been dubbed American cuisine, where familiar flavors blend with Asian, Italian, English and Mediterranean fares.

General Manager Ross Coleman said the modern and contemporary minimalism is exactly what the owners had in mind when they shed their franchise with the somewhat risqué Firkin and Crown at 440 Peachtree Parkway near Ronald Reagan Boulevard in Cumming. After a month-long redesign and fresh approach, four40 kitchen + bar was born.

“The franchise restrictions inhibited us,” Coleman said. “There was a lack of direction.”

Owner Parag Patel had wanted to bring a Midtown and Buckhead flavor to the Cumming area with his new city-chic inspired restaurant.

“We’ve created something that does work,” Coleman said. “We have teenagers to people in their 70s and 80s who all love the ambience and our food.”

Coleman, who has 25 years of restaurant experience, said the value is better now than with a franchise because everything is made fresh each day, instead of being shipped in frozen from a distributor.

On the menu: Roasted red pepper hummus ($7); peach bruschetta ($9); jerk fish tacos ($10); steak and pepper salad ($12); grilled spinach salmon salad ($12); BBQ ahi tuna on a flatbread ($13); duck confit ($13); pork tenderloin; Jameson whiskey glace salmon ($15) and even carryovers from the pub days like fish and chips ($11).

In addition, diners can select a grass-fed beef burger served with fries or chips or choose a homemade black bean patty instead for $8.50. An $11 ostrich burger is served with pico de gallo, jack cheese and avocado on a Kaiser roll.

Sides include made-to-order parmesan risotto ($5), jalapeno mac and cheese ($5) and roasted fingerling potatoes ($4).

“We operate at a higher standard,” Coleman said. “Customers get this great portion — not a huge portion. We make it right.”

Feedback, so far, tells Coleman he’s doing the right thing.

Coleman, of Milton, has worked with the Stoney River creators and with Brookwood Grill. He said his management style is to lift people up and the ultimate is when the guests experience that.

Sous chef Robert Sprouse will help Biondi in the kitchen. In the front of the house, Coleman’s assistant manager is Mike Krupar.

“I train my staff to make everything like we are serving our family,” Coleman said. “I operate with an extreme amount of integrity.”

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