Jorge Goicochea works a civilian job in the security division of the Montgomery County police department, but soon he’ll be running his new restaurant in North Bethesda as well.
Goicochea, who is from Peru and lives in Silver Spring, is building out Flor de Luna, which will offer a mix of Mexican, Peruvian and Spanish cuisine at the former Blue Star kosher restaurant location on Woodglen Drive.
The owner said Tuesday crews are working feverishly so the 3,400-square-foot restaurant can open as early as the first week of August, but he hopes at the very latest to be open by Aug. 15.
Goicochea said he’s planning a menu of Mexican staples such as tacos, fajitas and quesadillas; Peruvian dishes such as ceviche and lomo saltado—pieces of marinated New York strip steak served with onions, tomatoes, french fries and rice; as well as Spanish tapas and seafood paella.
This is not Goicochea’s first restaurant. From 2014, he was a partner at La Fogata Restaurant, a Peruvian concept on Bel Pre Road in Silver Spring, but said he sold his stake in the business to open Flor De Luna. He’s also worked second jobs as a waiter in the past.
The owner said the bar will serve three main types of cocktails—margaritas, pisco sours and mojitos—and expects to receive a full liquor license from the county.
“My three main drinks are going to give a personality to the restaurant,” Goicochea said.
The restaurant is scheduled to appear before the Montgomery County Board of License Commissioners for a liquor license hearing July 21.
Goicochea said he was attracted to the Woodglen Drive space because of its proximity to Rockville Pike. The restaurant’s location is near the intersection of Nicholson Lane and Woodglen Drive and is surrounded by other restaurants including Quincy’s South, Chili’s and Paladar Latin Kitchen & Rum Bar.
Blue Star, which served kosher beef and other items at the location, closed in October 2015 after its owners determined the business model wasn’t economically feasible, according to Washington Jewish Week.
Flor de Luna's Facebook page notes the restaurant is looking to hire cooks, waiters and bartenders.
Flor de Luna's location: