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More Details Released on Lotus 2.0, Abe & Arthur's

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Meatpacking District: We've all known for awhile that masterminds behind STK and Tenjune, Eugene Remm, Mark Birnbaum and Michael Hirtenstein, were planning on reopening the old Lotus space as a new venue called Abe & Arthur's with chef Franklin Becker at the helm of the food program. But today, the interested parties have sent out the official release about the space. The biggest reveals: Becker will be serving an "authentic" menu with "contemporary dishes" made from the "freshest" ingredients. They're now shooting for a summer '09 opening.

Franklin Becker Appointed Executive Chef of THE HIGHLY-ANTICIPATED New Restaurant, Abe & Arthur’s

EMM Group, New York’s Leading Hospitality Group, to Debut An Innovative Restaurant Concept and Dining Experience in the heart of the Meatpacking District

(New York, NY): Seasoned chef Franklin Becker has been named Executive Chef of Abe & Arthur’s, an innovative dining experience that will open this Summer in New York’s Meatpacking District serving crave-able American cuisine. Conceptualized and executed by the restaurant's owners, EMM Group principals Eugene Remm, Mark Birnbaum and Michael Hirtenstein, along with Becker, have created Abe & Arthur’s authentic menu that will feature contemporary dishes made from the freshest ingredients available and built on the foundation of American bistro classics.

“My philosophy is quite simple: Choose the right ingredients - form must follow function in everything you do. In other words, good ingredients and good technique will almost always lead to good food,” said Becker. “I am not influenced by trends, I stay focused on the basics as my foundation. Without a clear understanding of the basics, there cannot be innovation.”

With over 15 years of culinary experience, Becker formerly held the post of Executive Chef at several beloved New York restaurants, including Trinity at the Tribeca Grand Hotel, Brasserie, Local and Capitale. While at Capitale, Esquire’s John Mariani named it a “Best New Restaurant” in 2003. After Becker moved from Capitale to Tribeca Grand, Mariani wrote in his online newsletter: “When I praised Capitale as a best new restaurant, it was on the basis of the food prepared by chef Franklin Becker, who had a very fine touch and subtle ideas that seemed paragons of 21st century American taste and New York sophistication.”

Prior to his position as Executive Chef of Brasserie, Franklin was hired to oversee Atlantic City operations for Philadelphia restaurateur Stephen Starr of Starr Restaurant Organization (SRO). While with SRO, Franklin transformed the now defunct eatery, Washington Square, into a critically acclaimed restaurant that garnered the attention of a growing fan base. Becker also served as a private toque for Revlon mogul Ronald Perelman.

A seasoned chef, Becker has a stellar reputation and numerous accolades. Throughout his career, Becker has received glowing reviews from such high-profile writers as Gael Greene of New York magazine, as well as William Grimes of The New York Times, who wrote that Becker has “a talent for delivering big, punchy flavors.”

“Mark, Michael and I are excited to have Franklin on board as the Executive Chef of Abe & Arthur's. His experience, focus on quality ingredients and ability to add a technical twist to classic cuisine made him a clear choice for the venture. We are thrilled he has accepted the position with EMM Group,” said Remm.

Abe & Arthur’s is scheduled to open in early summer 2009. The 180-seat, bi-level restaurant was named after the owners’ grandfathers.

Eugene Remm and Mark Birnbaum along with business entrepreneur Michael Hirtenstein founded EMM Group, one of New York’s most successful hospitality, lifestyle and management companies, in 2006. Since that time the partners have built a solid reputation as leaders in the industry, organizing several hundred events and developing the company into a multi-faceted hub for successful venue ownership and execution. EMM Group specializes in restaurant and nightlife operations, marketing and event production, celebrity procurement and lifestyle management. Building on the success of their first nightlife venture Tenjune, a celebrity haunt located in the heart of the Meatpacking District, EMM Group’s business portfolio continues to expand with the creation of new trend-setting hospitality and lifestyle ventures. In 2007, EMM Group purchased The EMM Group Estate, a privately-owned property in the Hamptons that plays home to the most exclusive events during the summer season, and launched Four Hundred, a members-only, lifestyle management service. EMM Group is looking forward to the launch of The Chandelier Room in the Spring as well as the opening of Abe & Arthur’s and Simyone, their highly anticipated restaurant and lounge on 14th Street in Manhattan’s Meatpacking District. As EMM Group continues to expand it works to maintain the principles in which the company was founded, of superior execution, quality service, exceptional management and a strong operational foundation

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