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Jan 21, 2018
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Posts Tagged ‘chef change’

Blood & Sand hires chef Brian Coltrain, opens to public Monday and Tuesday

Friday, January 12th, 2018

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Members-only Blood & Sand has a new executive chef. Chef Brian Coltrain quietly assumed leadership of the kitchen in late November, according to general manager Sean Coltrain, who is also Brian’s brother.

Brian Coltrain has spent time in many of the area’s top kitchen, including Element, Niche and Guerrilla Street Food. Most recently he helped open Grace Meat & Three, where he served as front-of-house manager.

“We needed a true leader to be here,” Sean Coltrain said. The restaurant hadn’t had an official executive chef since Josh Charles left the post last spring. “(Brian’s) first real menu was our New Year’s menu. It’s cool to see the new direction he’s going. Now we have a creative force in the kitchen who can pull off what we’ve always wanted to do.”

Brian Coltrain said he’s excited to return to his fine dining roots.

“I’ve always felt I was meant to do fine dining,” he said. “It always felt right. I love the artistic expression. I love being able to use these unique ingredients from all over the world. It just feels like the right time to get back into what I really love.”  

Going forward, Coltrain said he wants to adhere to owner Tim Murphy’s motto: “The food you never knew you loved.”

“I want to introduce people to new ingredients that are prepared in a way that’s approachable and introduces them to another part of the world or another style of cuisine or brings in some history,” he said, adding he also wants to have more vegan and vegetarian dishes.

In addition to his new menu, Blood & Sand will host industry nights on Monday and Tuesday starting mid-January that are open to the public and feature a special menu.

Matt Sorrell is staff writer at Sauce Magazine. 

Related Content
Chef Josh Charles departs Blood & Sand

New owner discusses vision for Blood & Sand

Zac Adcox moves from Blood & Sand to Reeds American Table

Herbie’s unveils new chef, menus

Friday, December 15th, 2017

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Herbie’s has a new executive chef in the kitchen. Chef Jeramie Mitchell replaced chef John O’Brien in October. Herbie’s owner Aaron Teitelbaum announced the change this month, when Mitchell launched the restaurant’s new menus.

Following Herbie’s move from the Central West End to Clayton last year, owner Aaron Teitelbaum said he wanted a chef who could handle the leadership and the bigger crowds at the new location. Mitchell is the fourth chef to lead the Herbie’s team since the move.

“We needed someone to handle that volume and quality,” said Teitelbaum. “Mitchell has a similar style [to myself] and appreciates classic French techniques, but puts American influences into it.”

An Indiana native, Mitchell earned his culinary degree from Johnson & Wales. He has worked in kitchens in Florida and the Carolinas, and most recently Bristol Seafood Grill before taking over at Herbie’s.

Mitchell launched new brunch, lunch and dinner menus with new dishes like the soy caramel salmon, crab croquettes and seafood risotto, though Teitelbaum said classic dishes like the Firecracker Shrimp and beef Wellington will remain.

“I want customers to leave our restaurant and go ‘Wow, that’s amazing,’” said Teitelbaum. “That’s exactly what [Mitchell] has done here.”

Photo courtesy of Herbie’s 

Rachel Wilson is an editorial intern at Sauce Magazine. 

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Executive chef Michael Friedman has left Retreat Gastropub

Friday, November 3rd, 2017

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{ from left, beverage director Tim Wiggins, owner Travis Howard and executive chef Michael Friedman just before Retreat opened in 2015 } 

Chef Michael Friedman has left his post as executive chef at Retreat Gastropub in the Central West End. His last day of service was Wednesday, Nov. 1.

Friedman, who helped open Retreat in 2015, said he doesn’t have any definite plans yet, but he’s weighing his options.

“I want to challenge myself and do a little bit of personal growth,” Friedman said. “I had definitely hit the ceiling at Retreat and wanted to expand my range and fly a little bit. I think the long-term goal is to definitely open something up on my own. I’ve been talking with a couple of investment partners about that. But until that pans out, I’m doing some consulting work and I’d like to get into another restaurant.”

Retreat owner Travis Howard said in a statement that he is not naming a replacement for Friedman yet.

“Currently, we will be operating with the team that we’ve built over the past two years. We are confident in their ability to deliver all of the favorite dishes from our Retreat menu to the quality that our guests expect,” Howard said in the statement.

“We wish chef Friedman the best of luck in his future endeavors. We’re appreciative of the time that he spent with us at Retreat, and we’ll continue to feature the dishes that our guests have come to know and love, from our burger to the bread pudding.”

Photo by Michelle Volansky 

Matt Sorrell is staff writer at Sauce Magazine. 

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• Best New Restaurants 2015: Retreat Gastropub

• Ones to Watch 2016: Tim Wiggins at Retreat Gastropub

3 tea-infused cocktails to try at Retreat Gastropub

Chef Tello Carreón will leave Nixta after Oct. 21

Wednesday, October 4th, 2017

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{ from left, Tello Carreón and Ben Poremba } 

 

Big news from Botanical Heights – executive chef Tello Carreón will leave his position as executive chef of award-winning Mexican restaurant Nixta. His last day of service will be Saturday, Oct. 21. The initial announcement came today, Oct. 4, via a post on Carreón’s Instagram account.

Nixta owner Ben Poremba confirmed the departure in a statement and thanked Carreón for his work.

“As Nixta approaches its first anniversary, chef-owner Ben Poremba, along with his team at Bengelina Hospitality Group, will continue to passionately showcase Mexican fare as among the most exciting cuisines in the world,” the statement read. “Poremba is proud of the success Nixta has attained – both in St. Louis and nationally – during Carreón’s tenure. He thanks him for his immense contribution, and wishes him continued success in his future endeavors.”

Carreón said he’s not sure what his next move will be. “I just want to finish strong in these last few weeks, the way I started,” he said. “I contributed as much as I could to Nixta, and I gained as much as I could from the experience. I think it’s time for me to move on. It’s been a wonderful journey.”

Poremba said via text message that he did not know who will replace Carreón yet. He will helm the kitchen in the interim. He declined further comment.

Nixta opened in November 2016 and was named one of Sauce’s Best New Restaurants that same year. It has garnered local and national accolades since opening, most notably as one of Bon Appetit’s Best New Restaurants in America.

 

Photo by Carmen Troesser

Matt Sorrell is staff writer at Sauce Magazine.

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• Nixta earns spot on Bon Appétit’s top 10 new restaurants list

• Best New Restaurants 2016: No. 5 – Nixta

• Sneak Peek: Nixta in Botanical Heights

Chef Carl Hazel takes over Gamlin Whiskey House kitchen

Thursday, August 31st, 2017

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Carl Hazel has quietly taken the reigns as executive chef of Gamlin Whiskey House. Most recently, he had been executive chef at West End Pub and Grill.

Hazel assumed the role in July, and since then, he has worked with Gamlin Restaurant Group’s corporate chef Ryan Cooper to get a feel for the kitchen and the organization.

Hazel said Gamlin Whiskey House’s focus meshes up well with his background, especially his lengthy tenure as executive chef at The Scottish Arms.

“Gamlin Whiskey House being big on meat and whiskey is right up my alley,” Hazel said. “And after talking with some industry friends that have worked for (owners) Derek and Lucas (Gamlin) in the past, I couldn’t find anyone who said anything negative about them at all.”

Hazel said he doesn’t foresee any big menu changes at Gamlin Whiskey House until after the company’s latest project, 1764 Public House, opens later this year at 39 N. Euclid Ave.

“We’ll do some tweaking when (1764 Public House) opens because a couple of the items here will probably fit the menu and environment down there,” he said. “We’ll be looking at more of a broad menu change in late fall or early winter.”

Hazel said he welcomes the challenges of working in a bigger, high-volume kitchen.

“The numbers we put up are astounding,” he said. “It’s quite an undertaking to keep up with everything and everyone, but I’m really enjoying it.”

Photo courtesy of Gamlin Whiskey House

Matt Sorrell is staff writer at Sauce Magazine. 

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Cleveland-Heath owners sell restaurant, will relocate to Utah

Wednesday, August 30th, 2017

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Big changes are afoot at Cleveland-Heath. Owners Jenny Cleveland and chef Ed Heath have sold the restaurant to Keith and Kari McGinness, restaurant industry veterans who have roots in the area, as reported by St. Louis Magazine. The sale takes effect Friday, Sept. 1.

Cleveland said she and Heath will relocate to Salt Lake City, where Heath is from.

“We’ve been here for seven years with my family, so it’s time to go out there and do the same for him,” said Cleveland.

Cleveland said she and Heath will work with The Pub Corp., where they both have history – the two actually met while working at one of the company’s restaurants.

“They’ve got four restaurants in the Salt Lake area,” she said. “We’ve been consulting with them for some time; Ed spent quite a bit of time out there last year. Early on, we’re just going to be getting to know the restaurants and working on some new projects eventually.”

Read More: New owner discusses future of Cleveland-Heath

While the transition will be bittersweet, Cleveland said she and Heath would remain connected to the area; she still has family and property in the Metroeast.

“The last thing we want is for people to think we’re just leaving,” she said. “I don’t want to say goodbye. This is our baby, and it’s grown into something that we could never have imagined.”

Heath will remain for the next month or so helping with the kitchen, and Cleveland will make frequent trips back to help with the transition. “If they call me in January and say they need help with something, I’ll be there,” she said.

The Edwardsville eatery has received much acclaim since opening in November 2011. Heath earned national nods as James Beard Foundation semifinalist for Best Chef: Great Lakes in 2015 and 2016, and Sauce readers have frequently voted Cleveland-Heath among their favorite restaurants in the Readers’ Choice poll.

Cleveland said the intent is to keep up those high standards and make the transition as seamless as possible.

“I want people to understand, the faces here are still the same,” she said. “Rick (Kazmer), our chef de cuisine, is getting bumped to executive chef. He’s been in the kitchen with Ed for years. And Eli (Barnes) will still be general manager.”

Photo by Jonathan Gayman 

Matt Sorrell is staff writer at Sauce Magazine. 

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New owner discusses the future of Cleveland-Heath

Readers’ Choice 2015: Favorite Restaurant – Cleveland-Heath

Readers’ Choice 2014: Favorite Chef – Ed Heath

 

Eat This: Okonomiyaki at Cleveland-Heath

 

The Scoop: Cafe Osage taps Scott Davis for head chef

Thursday, June 15th, 2017

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{ Brie LT at Cafe Osage }

Scott Davis, who most recently helmed the kitchen at Rise Coffee House, has been tapped to take over as head chef at Cafe Osage.

Cafe Osage general manager Lizzy Rickard said Davis would step into the role next week. The position has been vacant since spring 2016 when chef David Kirkland left to start his own ventures, David Kirkland Catering and Turn.

“At that time, the team we had rose up to take over various positions,” Rickard said. “We’ve been very busy, and we decided it was time to bring in a chef again to best utilize our garden, bring some fresh creativity to the menu and help elevate the dining experience and the dishes.”

Rickard said the time is perfect for the change, since summer produce is starting to come from the garden, which will give Davis plenty to work with.

“We’ve let him know he has the freedom to really make it his own, and we’re open to new ideas and fresh starts,” Rickard said.

Photo by Michelle Volansky

Matt Sorrell is staff writer at Sauce Magazine. 

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Review: Cafe Osage 

First Look: Turn in Grand Center

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The Scoop: Chef Josh Charles departs Blood & Sand

Friday, May 12th, 2017

 

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{ Chef Josh Charles } 

 

After three months helming the kitchen, chef Josh Charles has left Blood & Sand. As reported by St. Louis Magazine, Charles decided to redirect his career to focus on his growing family.

Before Blood & Sand, Charles was executive chef at Element. “When I took the job, my wife was pregnant, and we thought ‘We can make this work, it’ll be fine.’ But the second the baby came, we realized it wasn’t going to work. Those first five weeks, I was not there at all because I was at the restaurant.”

In an effort to spend more time at home, Charles has taken a position as a prep cook at Boundary, which he said gives him more normal, daytime hours and a reduced stress level. He said he’d eventually like to get back to his pastry chef roots and delve into making some of the breads and pastries for the restaurant.

Charles said he’s still consulting with Blood & Sand while the search is on for his replacement, and he’ll also continue to create recipes, videos and blog posts for his website. He also plans to do some pop-up events.

“Hopefully now that I have a bit more time I can do a pop-up every other month or so, so I can still work that creative side of me, and work with friends and farmers,” he said.

Matt Sorrell is staff writer at Sauce Magazine. 

Related Content
The Scoop: Josh Charles leaves Element, heads to Blood & Sand

• The Scoop: New owner discusses vision for Blood & Sand

Ones to Watch 2014: Josh Charles

 

The Scoop: Josh Charles leaves Element, heads to Blood & Sand

Monday, February 6th, 2017

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Chef Josh Charles has left his post as executive chef at Element to helm the kitchen at Blood & Sand, as reported by St. Louis Magazine. Charles’ former chef de cuisine Tudor Seserman has stepped up to assume the executive chef role. Charles said the passing of the torch was smooth thanks to their close working relationship.

In his new role, Charles said he’ll work with Blood & Sand’s current chef Chris Krzysik through Valentine’s Day, and then will begin making his mark on the menu.

“The day after, it starts,” he said, adding it should take a month of switching out a couple of dishes at a time before the transition is complete. Charles said diners can expect a bill of fare that reflects his focus on quality ingredients and techniques. While he’ll put his stamp on the food at Blood & Sand, the restaurant’s much-loved tater tots will remain.

“It’s a great platform and a beautiful place,” said Charles. “They’ve always had a reputation for putting out great food and drink. I’m super excited.”

Krzysik said he is currently in talks to take a position at another restaurant, but couldn’t share more information at this time. Element co-owner Carol Hastie did not return requests for comment.

Photo courtesy of Christina Lane 

Related Content
The Scoop: New owner discusses vision for Blood & Sand

• The Scoop: Josh Charles is named executive chef at Element

• Ones to Watch 2014: Josh Charles and John Fauz

 

 

The Scoop: Summer Wright to helm Vicia’s pastry program, Reeds American Table names new pastry chef

Friday, December 23rd, 2016

 

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{ Summer Wright’s panna cotta at Reeds American Table }

 

Summer Wright has been named executive pastry chef at new restaurant Vicia, set to open in late January 2017. Wright currently holds that position at Reeds American Table, where she will be replaced by pastry assistant Ashley Rouch.

Wright said she took the new position in part because of the opportunity it will provide to work with Vicia co-owners Michael and Tara Gallina, who previously worked at Blue Hill at Stone Barns, a highly regarded restaurant in New York’s Hudson River Valley.

“Supporting local farmers is at the core of their cooking philosophy,” Wright said in an email. “It’s really fulfilling to work with Michael and Tara, who put so much emphasis on using the local farmers’ products.”

Wright, who has 16 years of experience in the kitchen, previously worked at Niche, Five Bistro and Claverach Farm. At Vicia, she’ll be responsible for creating sweet and savory pastries for the midday and evening menus. During the day, diners can expect croissants, quiche, scones, cookies and fruit tarts. “Having the opportunity to do a daily daytime service that includes a bakery menu is a major point of interest,” Wright said.

The pastry program will make use of whole grains milled in-house. That’s a big priority for Tara Gallina, who hopes to show people that there is much more out there than all-purpose flour.

“We are really excited to put an emphasis on how versatile and delicious freshly milled flour can be in baked goods,” she said. “Our hope is to spark a conversation with people that there is just as much seasonality and variety in grains as there is with other produce that we now think more about.”

At Reeds American Table, Rouch will have the opportunity to experiment with the pastry program, chef-owner Matt Daughaday said, but he doesn’t predict drastic changes to the dessert menu. “Summer created a formula that works,” he said.

Photo by Greg Rannells

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Save Room for Dessert

The Scoop: Gallinas to open Vicia in The Cortex

• The Scoop: Chef Michael Gallina to open series of pop-ups, new restaurant in native STL

Best New Restaurants 2015: No. 5 – Reeds American Table

 

Editor’s note: This post originally misspelled Ashley Rouch’s name. It was updated at 2:45 p.m. on Dec. 23 to correct the error. It was also updated at 4:40 p.m. to include an additional quote from Tara Gallina. 

 

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