StarChefs Announces Atelier Of Taste, Presented By GREY GOOSE® Vodka
StarChefs is delighted to launch the first-ever Atelier of Taste program, presented by GREY GOOSE — the world’s best tasting vodka. The culinary and cocktail mentorship program will welcome 10 rising star chefs and bartenders to the home of GREY GOOSE, Le Logis, an elegant 17th century manor located in the heart of France.
The residents will learn about the complex interplay between flavor and technique from two industry icons — Chef Alain Ducasse and GREY GOOSE Cellar Master François Thibault — with the intention to further develop their unique style of artistry and inspire them in their careers.
The chefs and bartenders were chosen through a stringent selection process led by StarChefs — renowned for identifying new talent on the vanguard of cuisine. StarChefs selected those who are rethinking the landscape of cocktails and food, just as GREY GOOSE challenged conventions and redefined the vodka category when it was introduced 20 years ago. The following up-and-coming figures who are already making waves in their respective markets will join the Atelier of Taste program this month:
Chef Giorgio Rapicavoli — Giorgio Rapicavoli immersed himself in Miami’s dining scene at a young age, working for influential Florida chefs, such as Robin Haas and Adam Votaw, before becoming an executive chef at just 21.
Bartender Gustavo Martinez — Known for his culinary approach to cocktail preparation, Martinez transforms simple ingredients into delectable potions and infusions.
Chef Roxanne Spruance — Roxanne Spruance jump-started her career while still in high school in Chicago, apprenticing with acclaimed chefs including Elissa Narrow and Shawn McClain. She found her way to New York and held the position of chef de partie at Wylie Dufresne’s legendary restaurant. In 2016, Spruance branched out on her own, becoming a chef and restaurant owner, the culmination of a career begun many years before.
Bartender Jesse Vida –Jesse Vida fell into bartending back in the early aughts in his native San Francisco. In 2013, he made the trip cross-country to NYC and never looked back as his career blossomed. He got his big break working under the tutelage of Jack McGarry and Sean Muldoon, and was later named the Head Bartender of McGarry’s Cuban establishment.
Chef Jonathan Whitener — The California native cut his teeth as Jon Shook and Vinny Dotolo’s chef de cuisine for three years before branching out on his own in 2016. His diverse background — born to a German father and Mexican mother — gives him a wealth of culinary influences to draw from, which reaches its full expression in his fusion cooking.
Bartender Christine Wiseman — This former Ms. Speedrack — the all-female bartending competition that raises money for breast cancer charities — Christine Wiseman is a veritable force of nature. Christine brings an eclectic spin to cocktails, serving up tropical-drink fantasies infused with local LA flavors.
Chef Noah Sandoval — Named one of the Best New Chefs of 2017 by Food & Wine Magazine, Noah Sandoval is no stranger to Chicago’s fine dining scene. He garnered a Michelin star back in 2012. He rose to national acclaim upon opening his newest restaurant and fine-tuned his culinary sensibility with its extended New American tasting menu.
Bartender Josh Fossitt — Josh Fossitt learned the cocktail landscape from the best in the business in New York City. Upon returning home to Chicago, Josh created national cocktail lists and curating its low-alcohol craft cocktail list.
Chef Ryan Pollnow — Ryan Pollnow got his start in San Francisco’s dining scene while working as a dishwasher and progressively worked his way up in the city’s top establishments. His career took a sharp turning following an internship in Spain’s Basque country, which inspired him to open a convivial Spanish restaurant in the heart of San Francisco. Following its runaway success, Ryan was promoted to Executive Chef of his restaurant group overseeing the kitchens of a variety of restaurants and forthcoming projects.
Bartender Nicolas Torres — San Francisco native Nicholas Torres has worked in the city’s bar scene — from dive bars to well-heeled hotspots — for the past ten years. He has risen to national attention while working as the bar director at his 2 Michelin-star restaurant, renowned for its dinner party approach to fine-dining. He recently opened a cocktail bar, where his penchant for using local produce alongside unique and small-batch spirits is sure to shine.
Upon arrival to Le Logis, chefs and bartenders will be separated into pairs and will collaborate on a cocktail/food pairing using local ingredients selected from the traditional covered market in the town of Cognac. The group will also be among the first to work with the newest iteration of the vodka, GREY GOOSE Interpreted by Ducasse, which will launch in the US this October. A toasted wheat vodka born out of a collaborative process between Chef Ducasse and M. Thibault, GREY GOOSE Interpreted by Ducasse pioneers a new vodka category aptly named “Vodka Gastronomique”, celebrating the notion that vodka can be enjoyed with food.
Throughout the Atelier of Taste workshop, Chef Ducasse and M. Thibault will interact with the residents, offering nuggets of wisdom and inspiration for them along the way and providing feedback and guidance to the chefs and bartenders on their creations.
Following the trip to France, StarChefs will work with the residents to bring this experience to life in their hometowns. These experiences will showcase new recipes or pairing menus inspired by their time at Le Logis, incorporating innovative food and cocktail ingredients and the knowledge that they gained while working alongside Chef Ducasse and M. Thibault.