Saying a restaurant belongs to Tom Douglas or Ethan Stowell or Maria Hines or Renee Erickson is an easy shorthand, a window into the approach and style you can expect to see on the menu. But generally the chef whose name gets you in the door is entirely different from the one who cooked your entrée.
One of my favorite aspects of this job is the ability to go beyond the experience of dining at a restaurant and tell the story of what’s happening in back of the house. Quite often it’s a story of men and women whose hard work makes their boss look good, a chef-owner who can’t afford a PR rep, or a chef de cuisine more concerned with staying out of the weeds than appearing in print.
And so I ask, for purposes I will explain later: Who, in your opinion, is a rising culinary star who deserves more attention? It doesn’t have to be someone who works for a big name, but we are interested in hearing about ferociously talented local chefs 35 or younger who have been running a restaurant kitchen for less than two years, or their own place for less than one. Let me know your thoughts: firstname.lastname@example.org.