Photo courtesy 1921 by Norman Van Aken via Facebook
The facade of the historic Mount Dora home that will house 1921 by Norman Van Aken
At long last, Norman Van Aken's Mount Dora labor of love, 1921 by Norman Van Aken
, will finally open Tuesday,
Aug. 16. (We heard from their PR today that "there have been some changes," including the new official open date.) We can't wait.
Van Aken is one of the original celebrity chefs (along with friends Emeril Lagasse and the late, great Charlie Trotter — they're known as the Three Amigos of modern American cuisine), and the father of "Floribbean" cookery, which mixes the Latin flavors of our vibrant immigrant populations (South and Central Americas, plus the Caribbean) with the native ingredients of Florida. Currently, he's the chef-owner of Norman's at the Ritz-Carlton Grande Lakes
The menu doesn't look too shabby, either, based on the preview plates on 1921's Facebook page
. Here are a couple of the gorgeous dishes Van Aken has been testing:
Seared duck breast with mole and smoked Florida mushrooms
Pan-roasted chicken with peanut mole, smoked mushroom, burnt scallion, Zellwood sweet corn and chicken jus
Pecan wood-grilled ribeye steak and veal sweetbreads with ember-roasted root vegetables and chayote
Florida tilefish, passion fruit, soy, sesame, blood orange, chiles
Reservation lines are currently open (via the website and by calling the number below) and we'd suggest making that rezzy sooner rather than later. Word on the street is that Mount Dora is about to become the hottest dining spot in Central Florida.
1921 by Norman Van Aken
142 E. Fourth Ave., Mount Dora