AKIN Hospitality Group was formed by passionate professionals in the restaurant and hotel industry to create memorable dining experiences. From fast casual and delivery to high-end restaurants and hotel food and beverage operations, we have the experience, talent, and discipline to create lasting memorable dining experiences.
Union Fare opened in the fall of 2016 in the heart of Union Square. Revolutionary in design, Union Fare was a 24,000 square feet of dining. Housing a bakery with instafamous croissants, as well as a great display of in-house baked goods, a cafe with award winning coffee, a lounge, rooms for private dining, a contemporary American restaurant and a food hall. The food hall was unique onto itself as it offered different grab and go stations such as a Poké station, farm fresh salads station, mexican food station, a market plate station with roasted chicken, salmon, and a large offering of vegetables, Neopolitan pizza station, a classic roadside burger station, a sushi station, and a made-to-order sandwich station. All station were managed internally by the same team in order to streamline the operation and reduce costs across the board. Union Fare opening to great fanfare becoming a union square landmark.
Chef Yvan Lemoine is the founder of AKIN Hospitality Group. Yvan was the Executive Chef at Union Fare in NYC. Prior to Union Fare, Yvan worked with Tao Group for 8 years opening Lavo, Arlington club, and Surf Lodge, as a bartender, bar manager, and chef eventually becoming the Chef de Cuisine at Bodega Negra and the Dream Hotel Downtown.
Yvan was born in Venezuela and at the age of 13, moved to Brooklyn, NY. He attended Long Island City H.S. where he was introduced to fine dining with the help of C-Cap: Careers through Culinary Arts Program. Yvan began his career at 15 years old in the famed French Manhattan restaurant La Caravelle with chef Cyril Renaud. Yvan then went onto work with Jacques Torres at Le Cirque in 2000, then with Rocco Dispirito and Sam Mason. He then went on to cook for dignitaries and royalty at the French consulate in NYC. In 2015, Yvan won the Daniel Boulud/ Paul Bocuse scholarship and attended the prestigious Institut Paul Bocuse in Lyon, France. He then had the opportunity to work at Le Neuvieme Art, a 2-star Michelin restaurant in Lyon with Chef Christophe Roure MOF. He currently holds a Masters in hospitality management from Cornell University and is the author 2 books: Food Fest 365!:The Officially Fun Food Holiday Cookbookand Comidas USA. Yvan lives in Manhattan, plays the guitar and is getting married in Tulum February of 2019.
Ryan Van Grouw
Ryan Van Grouw is a founding partner of Akin Hospitality Group. A New Jersey native Ryan was the Chef de Cuisine for two years at Union Fare Restaurant. Before opening Union Fare, Ryan spent five years as the Chef de Cuisine at Quality meats steakhouse in Manhattan. Before that, he worked at Pier Sixty the Light House executing large banquets up to 1,300 people. Ryan brings with him front of the house experience as well having worked is several restaurants and hotels as a server, manager, and front desk operator. Ryan earned a Grand Diploma in culinary arts from the French Institute in NYC and a Bachelor of Science in Hotel, Restaurant and Institutional Management from Pennsylvania State University. Ryan is the most organized and meticulous chef; you will ever meet lives in Brooklyn with his wife-to-be and loves fantasy football.
John Kim a Philly native is a founding partner of Akin and the opening Chef de Cuisine of Union Fare for 2 years. Before joining Union Fare John spent 3 years a sous chef at midtown Italian restaurant Lavo, a part of the very successful Tao Group. In Philadelphia, John worked his way up in a variety of kitchens from small chef-driven restaurants to corporate groups. John worked with Bonefish Grill as the management team opening several properties with the company. He attended Montgomery Community College. John loves fancy watches, good scotch and is a die-hard Eagles fan.
Yuri Sabogal was born in Brooklyn NY but raised in Colombia. She is pastry wizard behind all desserts and an amazing cake artist. Before Joining Akin Hospitality Yuri worked with the Tao group, Giorgio Armani Restaurant, and Thomas Keller’s Bouchon Bakery. Chef Yuri graduated from the Institute of Culinary Education and did her internship with the one and only Francois Payard at Payard Bakery. She considers family to be the most important thing in the world and is happiest on a snowy mountain snowboarding.
Chef Scott is a Sous Chef at Akin hospitality. Scott was born in Woodside, NY and started cooking out of necessity as a kid. As he started to cook regularly, the more curious he became about food and eventually fell in love with it. “I love the feeling of cooking; my mind floats away and I feel truly relaxed. Ideas and possibilities flow and I get to chill, have fun, preparing something for my loved ones & guests to enjoy and hopefully remember!” Chef Scott went to school at Johnson & Wales University in Providence, RI and graduated in 2017. After graduating Scott interned at Alden & Harlow in Cambridge, MA. His first cooking job was at Nick's on Broadway in Providence, RI for two years working his way up the ranks. Seeking to expand his culinary knowledge Scott went to work at Ken’s Ramen in Providence before moving to NYC. In Manhattan is where Scott first met the team working at Union Fare. Scott says his biggest motivation is his Mom. “She sacrificed so much for me to be where I am today and is my biggest motivation.” Scott has a twin brother, loves a good book and is a sucker for chocolate chip cookies.
Ashley attended Valencia University to become an emergency medical technician. This would be the foundation for her life as she entered the hospitality industry, as no emergency was too much for her to handle. Ashley started in New York City in Mr Biggs Bar and Grill. Quickly she was recruited by the Tao Group to lead the mixology program at Bodega Negra and the Dream Hotel. Wanting to further her career Ashley went to work for Paige Hospitality as the General Manager of The Ainsworth. After heading their prestigious Park Avenue location Ashley teamed up with Akin.
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