Asheville, North Carolina's Heirloom Hospitality Group
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Deep Dish: June 2014

Food Arts Staff - June 2014

Two prominent chefs, Gavin Kaysen and Floyd Cardoz, have decamped with plans to go back to their roots. After seven years, Kaysen exited Café Boulud (20 E. 76th St.) this month and returned home to Minneapolis, where he plans to open his own restaurant. As a member of the Dinex Group, he was also director of culinary operations for Café Boulud in Palm Beach and Toronto. Kaysen will continue as head coach for the Bocuse d’Or’s U.S. team. Chef de cuisine Aaron Bludorn, who has been with Café Boulud for six years, replaces him as exec chef. Cardoz departed from North End Grill—the final stop on his 17 year run with Union Square Hospitality Group, which included his innovative Indian-influenced menus at Tabla—at the end of April. He intends to “focus on cooking with Indian flavors, explore projects in India, and work on my forthcoming cookbook.” Eric Korsh, who left Calliope in January, is the new exec chef at North End Grill. • David Pasternack and John Meadow have opened Barchetta in Chelsea, dishing up nearly a dozen types of crudo as well as Atlantic surf clams, a rarity on seafood menus. Pasternack still oversees the kitchen at Esca and heads the fish program at Eataly. • Ryan Skeen became exec chef at Los Americanos (305 Church St.) in March. It’s owned by partners Emmanuelle LaSalle and Patrick Fahey. Fahey also owns Macao Trading Company. Skeen was previously at Allen & Delancey. • Chef/owner Lala Sharma and his son, Abishek Sharma, launched Savoury (489 Columbus Ave.), their second Indian restaurant together, in March. They opened Swagat in 2011. Lala previously ran the popular West Village Surya. Mumbai-trained Fahim Abbasi designed the Indian inspired cocktail program, which features drinks such as Vanilla Vindaloo (a Stoli vanilla Martini). • Owner Russell Bellanca celebrated the 100th anniversary of the original Roman restaurant, Alfredo’s, by moving Alfredo of Rome (7 E. 54th St.) to Bice’s old location in March and renaming it Alfredo 100. Exec chef James Henderson, previously at Oceana, wears the toque. • Daruma-ya opened in the former Greenwich Grill space (428 Greenwich St.) in April. Owned by Japanese hospitality group Plan-do-see, which operates restaurants and hotels throughout Japan, Daruma-ya takes its name from the traditional handmade Japanese wishing doll (often referred to as a goal doll) that keeps the owner of the doll focused on achieving his or her goal. Chef Nobuhito Dosei prepares the small plates that make up the izakaya part of the menu. The lower level sushi bar, Sushi Azabu, continued to operate throughout the renovation. • Restaurateurs Alex Mendelsohn and Louis Alvarez of the Beyond Restaurants Group and Cristina Castañeda transformed the location of Café Frida on Amsterdam between 97th and 98th Sts. into Órale Mexican Kitchen (768 Amsterdam Ave.) in March. The original Café Frida on Columbus Ave. and 77th St. remains open. • Chef/owner Shaun Dougherty and his brother Daniel established Crescent Grill in Long Island City in March. They brought in chef Milton Enriquez, from Compass Restaurant, to collaborate on the menu.

Just in time for the summer season, Bay Kitchen Bar opened, overlooking Harbor Marina on the south side of Gardiners Bay (39 Gann Road) in the space that once housed Bostwick’s Seafood Grill. Taking the local mandate to new heights, chef Eric Miller’s menu features clams, oysters, fluke, and tuna from nearby waters.

The Barking Crab (88 Sleeper St.) announced its new exec chef, Joshua Brown, who arrived from Tomasso Trattoria & Enoteca in Southborough, where he helmed the kitchen. • Ping pong is the game at Blazing Paddles (82 Lansdowne St.), the latest creation of nightlife guru Patrick Lyons, president of the Lyons Group. Located under the Fenway sports bar, Game On!—a combined restaurant and entertainment space—taps into the table tennis craze hitting Boston. He brought in a member of his team, Jake Nicholson, as gm, and Barry Rafferty, an Irish import, as operations director. Norman Bonilla, a Lyons Group vet, is exec chef, and Sean Moore serves as sous chef. He was previously at Trade restaurant.

Restaurateur Juan Ceballos and chefs/brothers Vinicio, Sergio, and Bolivar Llanos opened Arezzo Ristorante & Bar in Westport. They previously worked together at Le Madri and Centolire in New York City.

Jose Garces has opened Volvér inside the Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts. Meaning “to return” in Spanish, the 34 seat restaurant offers a multicourse tasting menu by Garces and chef de cuisine Natalie Maronski. Get your tickets to reserve one of the two seatings—pre-theater or performance.

Exec chef/owner Claudio Pirollo of Et Voila! (5120 MacArthur Blvd., NW) appointed Alex Malaise the new pastry chef in March. Malaise ran his own restaurant, Les Flâneries Gourmandes, in Brussels. • Gelato artisans and co-owners of Dolcezza, Robb Duncan and his wife, Violeta Edelman, launched Dolcezza Gelato Factory & Coffee Lab (550 Penn St.), which produces fresh gelato and coffees, in March. They have three other shops in the Washington, D.C. area.

Heirloom Hospitality Group has opened Nightbell (32 S. Lexington Ave.), a speakeasy, with exec chef/co-owner Katie Button running the kitchen. Beverage director (and Button’s husband) Félix Meana compliments the food with craft cocktails. Both are still associated with Heirloom’s Cúrate, and Meana continues working with José Andrés’ ThinkFoodGroup, most recently helping open restaurants at the Cosmopolitan Las Vegas and The Bazaar at the SLS Hotel South Beach.

Chef/partner Giorgio Rapicavoli and Alex Casanova, who run the Eating House in Coral Gables, established Tapería Raca (the combination of the first two syllables of their last names) at 7010 Biscayne Blvd. Chef de cuisine Ryan Harrison last worked with Rapicavoli at the former pop-up, Drinking Room.

Undaunted by the closing of their first restaurant, Bonsoirée, last year, the husband and wife chef duo Beverly Kim and John Clark established their new Korean-American spot, Parachute, at 3500 N. Elston Ave. this spring. • Another husband and wife team—Debbie and Jamie Evans—launched the Peckish Pig (623 Howard St., Evanston) restaurant and brewery in March. The two also own Celtic Knot Public House in Evanston and Towbar in Rogers Park. • Exec chef James Gottwald and chef de cuisine Kyle Peter­sen designed the menu at Fulton Market Kitchen (311 N. Sangamon St.), which opened in March. Gottwald previously worked at Monti’s, while Petersen worked at Naha. • Kevin Boehm and Rob Katz of Boka Restaurant Group plan to open their first Japanese restaurant, Momotaro, at 820 W. Lake St. next month. Their chefs will be Mark Hellyar, who worked as corporate development chef for Starr Restaurants in Philadelphia, and Jeff Ramsey, who was sushi chef at Tapas Molecular Bar in Tokyo. • Owners Kevin Heisner and Soo Choi launched Plein Air Cafe (5751 S. Woodlawn Ave.) this spring. Heisner still co-owns Heisler Hospitality, while Choi previously co-owned Little Branch Café. Art Jackson, chef/co-owner of Pleasant House Bakery, helped plan the menu. • Chef Shin Matsuda runs the kitchen at the recently opened Ani (3056 N. Lincoln Ave.). He was previously exec chef at Arami Go.

An August opening is planned for The Edgewater, a hotel so glamorous in its heyday that big name bands such as Glenn Miller did live radio broadcasts while playing there. “It was the toast of the Midwest,” says gm/senior vice president Ronald Morin, who was recruited from The Grove Park Inn in Asheville, NC. After a two year, $100 millon renovation, the hotel, located near the state capital and the University of Wisconsin-Madison, will offer the only waterfront dining on Lake Mendota. Thomas Welther has relocated from the Hilton Anatole hotel in Dallas to helm the kitchens of its five dining venues.

Ronnie Killen, chef/owner of Killen’s Steakhouse, has opened the doors to his Killen’s Texas Barbecue (3613 E. Broadway, Pearlman). Look for meats by the pound and seasonal cobbler on the menu from Houston pitmaster Patrick Feges.

Carlo’s Bakery, by Buddy “Cake Boss” Valastro and family, opened its very first store west of the Mississippi at the Grand Canal Shoppes at Venetian Pa­lazzo (327 Las Vegas Blvd. South #2813). Christina Nasso serves as gm and head baker. She previously worked at Carlo’s Bakery in Hoboken, NJ. • Kerry Simon and Cory Harwell have opened Carson Kitchen (South 124 Sith St.), with 90 seats and a design inspired by Simon’s Las Vegas home. The menu includes shared plates, sandwiches, and flatbreads prepared in a stone oven.

Chef Brian Dunsmoor and manager Jonathan Strader (of The Hart and the Hunter at the Palihotel) have replaced opening chefs Angela Hernandez and Rob Lawson of Flores (2024 Sawtelle Blvd., L.A.). Dunsmoor and Strader will also remain at The Hart and the Hunter. No word on Hernandez and Lawson’s new gigs. • Coastal Luxury Management launched its first SoCal brick-and-mortar, Faith & Flower (705 W. Ninth St., L.A.), in April. Exec chef Michael Hung, formerly of San Francisco’s La Folie, oversees all culinary operations. • Eureka!, a California-based family of restaurants, opened its latest one in Huntington Beach (7631 Edinger Ave., Suite 1524, Huntington Beach). Exec chef Ron Guidone, also chef/owner of Mangiamo in Manhattan Beach, runs the kitchen.

David Gingrass became exec chef of the five Bay Area locations of Pacific Catch, where he oversees all culinary operations. Prior to joining the Pacific Catch team, he was consulting for Trader Vic’s Emeryville. • Claire Sprouse has joined The Square on Washington Square in North Beach, San Francisco, as bar manager, proffering modern classic cocktails using house-made ingredients. • Michel Bistro (3343 Lakeshore Ave., Oakland) has opened in the former YaYu Ethiopian space, with Saison alum Anthony Salguero running the kitchen. Owners Germain Michel and Samie Didda also own Amelie in San Francisco and New York City.

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