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Category: Restaurant

Bermuda getaway takes a page from Mark Twain

Bermuda getaway takes a page from Mark Twain

Up the steps of the Rosedon Hotel’s wide, welcoming veranda of the type enjoyed by Mark Twain in his day, awaits a 40-room boutique property that began humbly as a bed and breakfast in the 1950s before emerging as a world-class destination. “My grandmother Elizabeth Kitson bought the main house in the 1950s and turned it into a bed and breakfast,” says Lee Petty, co-owner and creative director. “It grew from there.” The property was managed by generations of Elizabeth…

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Insurance pros bet on wine and wedding biz

Insurance pros bet on wine and wedding biz

Five years ago, Cheryl and Gene Long gave up their desk jobs in the insurance business to create something really beautiful. On a rolling tract of land, dotted with barns and adorned with the ruins of an old stone chapel, the couple envisioned a wine-tasting room in an old cow-milking barn for him, and a wedding and party venue centered around the chapel and old horse stables for her. “The two ideas paired well together,” says Cheryl Long, as Sassafras…

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From life among the stars to the snow peaks of Aspen

From life among the stars to the snow peaks of Aspen

Chef Tiziano Gortan worked for years among the stars— both the Michelin stars, which ranked at least two restaurants where he cooked, as well one in Ireland, owned by a quiet band of rock stars who went by the name of … U-2! In his travels, the Italian native earned his chops working for the only 3-star Michelin restaurant in Milan before jetting off to Dublin to work as a pastry chef in in Dublin’s Clarence Hotel, where the world-renowned…

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No tattoos, no jargon; just clean cooking

No tattoos, no jargon; just clean cooking

Chef David Slay begins his day at sunup. “I’m not a big sleeper,” says the top Zagat rated chef/owner of Park Ave restaurant in Stanton, Calif. “The first thing I do is check our video feed from my vineyard, so I can see as workers arrive, and start planning for the day.” By 8 a.m., Chef Slay is on the scene at his destination restaurant in a blue-collar community about 15 miles from the coast. The romantic restaurant, with its…

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A chophouse fit for a king

A chophouse fit for a king

Rising from the vast, flat stretches dominated by defense contractor buildings and busy highways stands a castle, of sorts. Designed with symmetry inspired by Frank Lloyd Wright, the 8,000 square foot, two-story structure of stone and wood, houses a restaurant fit for King Arthur and his Knights of the Round Table. Under the peaked roofline of River Stone Chophouse, in a dining room and four event spaces echoing an Arts and Crafts architectural style, guests feast on the finest Hereford…

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From powdered potatoes to homemade heaven on a plate

From powdered potatoes to homemade heaven on a plate

After retiring from a 20-year commercial real estate career, John Zimka picked up the reins of an Illinois café and kicked it into its second act. Tackling the menu with determination, Zimka got rid of old “diner style” staples like powdered potatoes and canned gravy and ushered in menu items such as fish tacos and stuffed potato pancakes, as he went about revamping Tony’s Café of Crystal Lake, Ill. “Tony’s was at the tail end of its run after 20…

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Suitcase Clones & Bold Ideas

Suitcase Clones & Bold Ideas

The pairing that started Laurel Ridge Winery involved “suitcase clones” and a daring decision. “Suitcase Clones”—vine clippings famously smuggled from France to Oregon in the 1970s by Charles Coury to reinvigorate the flagging, cool-climate vineyards of Oregon— were half the inspiration for David Teppola to dare to dream of making wine. The other half involved swimming against the tide of winemaking wisdom of the time, and buying a tract of nutrient-poor land to grow his grapes. His daughter Kira Teppola,…

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Riding the waves of coastal dining

Riding the waves of coastal dining

For those who’ve dreamed of opening their own restaurant on a bluff on the Pacific coast, Jon and MaryLynne Hamlin of Oregon have already planted their flag. High above the crashing sea, with a view that stretches up and down the craggy shoreline, the Tidal Raves restaurant has commanded the spot as a popular dining establishment for 29 years. “It was our goal to do our own thing in hospitality at some point,” says Jon Hamlin. After I graduated The…

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From dishwasher to owner of 3 BYOB restaurants

From dishwasher to owner of 3 BYOB restaurants

Richard McLain, the chef/owner of a successful multi-unit independent group of restaurants in Connecticut called Nataz, started in the hospitality business as a dishwasher at age 14. But at 17, the entrepreneurial young man was unexpectedly let go after his employer discovered he’d fathered a little baby girl whom he named Natasha; Nataz for short.  “I didn’t know what to do at that point,”McLain says. “I had learned restaurants the right way, working side-by-side with Italian immigrants who had high…

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A clear culinary vision from Ottawa penthouse

A clear culinary vision from Ottawa penthouse

On St. Laurent Boulevard in Ottawa, Canada, in the penthouse of a luxury condominium building, a breath of fresh air blows through a new restaurant. Le St. Laurent restaurant, with its panoramic views of Ottawa and beyond, was opened in July under the leadership of Executive Chef and GM Ryan Edwards. The concept, says Edwards, is a marriage of high-end, post-modern décor, sophistication, sweeping views, and a menu rooted in both local produce and the groundbreaking cuisine he learned in the…

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