Last night Book Bindery owner Sumi Almquist issued the official word: The chef heading up the kitchen upon Shaun McCrain's departure will be Nicolas Borzee. The chef, who goes by Nico, is currently installed at Artusi; he's the guy behind the adventurous tasting menus that have been coming from its sparsely appointed kitchen of late.
According to Hahn, the restaurant isn't just getting a new chef. Book Bindery as we know it will close for good on June 28, McCrain's last night in the kitchen. After a July remodel, it will reopen in late August with a new look, its new chef, and a new name that has yet to be announced.
The Alsace-born Borzee arrived in Seattle last year with an impressive resume that includes a constellation of Michelin-starred establishments, like Paris's L'Atelier de Joel Robuchon and Alain Ducasse's Bar et Boeuf and Louis XV restaurants in Monte Carlo. He spent three years at Daniel Patterson's splendid (as in two Michelin stars splendid) Coi in San Francisco. He did a kitchen stage with the Book Bindery folks when he arrived in town, and apparently made an impression.
Almquist promises more details soon about the new restaurant's name, menu, and team, but if Borzee could make a name for himself in Artusi's limited setup, I can't wait to see what he's capable of with a full complement of kitchen equipment. Meanwhile, you have one more month to visit Book Bindery's current iteration and wish the current chef luck in his next endeavor. McCrain and his girlfriend (and the restaurant's GM) Jill Kinney are planning a place of their own somewhere in Seattle.