Chef Ben Grupe to launch year-long pop-up series in former Stellina space

The kitchen had barely cooled since Stellina’s final service on New Year’s Eve before chef Ben Grupe stepped in and fired up the ranges. As The Scoop reported in December, Grupe announced that he would continue his pop-up dinner series at the Lindenwood Park space, located at 3342 Watson Road. Now, he’s released more details about his upcoming projects.

Grupe will host a year-long ticketed monthly dinner series beginning Jan. 29 and 30. Each dinner will feature a different five-course menu, and each course will be paired with a beer or cocktail. “I’ll be making food that I could rarely cook at my old job. I’m focused on making it casual, honest, contemporary and regional,” said Grupe, who most recently worked as executive chef at Meadowbrook Country Club in Ballwin.

Grupe’s regional fare will be sourced from several locations from the City Bitty Farm in Kansas City to Three Rivers Farm in Illinois. “Properly raised animals are key to this project. We’ll also can and ferment our own vegetables. Solid flavors are going to be our focus,” he said.

When not preparing for that month’s dinner, Grupe will be prepare his team for the American Culinary Federation Culinary Olympics in October. “My priority career-wise is my Olympic team,” said Grupe, who has served as Team USA’s captain since 2013. “This dinner series is my creative outlet. We’ll be hosting dinners based around the team’s schedule.”