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Born in the outskirts of Lyon, I trained with the top chefs in France, many of whom ran Relais & Chateaux establishments, until coming to New York City in 1980. My food is contemporary French, emphasizing the seasons, but with an added appreciation of what the world has to offer: Italy, Japan, and Spain, for example. I love the rusticity of Italian cuisine, the creativity of Spain, and the finesse of Japan, and of course, being French, I think that French cooking with its foundation is a little bit superior! To relax here in New York, I go to movies, golf, and try to find time to be with friends. My greatest love for unwinding is travel, but even without leaving New York City, I can experience here every cuisine of the world, which in turns informs my approach to cooking. And I love American cooking which, I would like to add, is more a cuisine of passion than anything else. American chefs come from so many different backgrounds so there isn’t simply one tradition.
I work with a producer in Virginia who breeds the best squab in America. Its flesh has a subtle flavor of red meat and game, and its skin is very fine and easy to crisp. It’s one of the nicest small game meats for spring and summer. And I also buy from Four Story Hill Farm!
We usually cook the squab on the bone to keep it tender and bring out its full flavor. We make it browned with crème fraîche, poached, smoked and, in the summer, grilled. We have three famous dishes: vadouvan-seasoned grilled squab with avocado chutney and baby radishes, hickory-smoked supreme with a pea and lettuce velouté, and tartine of squab en salmis, with foie gras and wild mushrooms on sourdough toast.