MilkWood Restaurant to be repurposed in honor of David McAtee

SHANNON COGAN | WAVE 3 News

Chef Edward Lee has decided to close MilkWood Restaurant and rename it McAtee Community Kitchen.

“I’m honoring a man who was a chef who gave back to the community, and I want to give back as well,” Lee said.

McAtee was killed in the early morning hours of June 1st at the corner of South 26th Street and Broadway in Louisville outside of his barbecue restaurant.

Lee spoke to WAVE 3 News on Tuesday night, saying the restaurant has a “beautiful kitchen with new equipment.” He plans to use it to make the community food three days a week and also use it as a training ground for young black aspiring chefs.

“To try to open MilkWood in the September just didn’t feel right,” Lee explained of the change.

He and his team will drop off 100 family meals with four servings, groceries and supplies to Louisville’s West End, Shelby Park and Russell neighborhoods every Monday, Wednesday and Friday.

He says his non-profit the Lee Initiative will cover some of the costs, but MilkWood also had money left in its bank account to keep the initiative going until November. Lee says then, hopefully, feeding the community can become a permanent fixture.

Chef Nikkia Rhodes of MilkWood will take over the new concept.

When asked about the new information released that says there was residue on David McAtee body, indicating he fired a gun at officers or handled a gun after it was fired the night he died, Lee said, “I’m not here to judge. It pains me to know another chef died.”

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