BILL TELEPAN OCEANA Chef Bill Telepan is one of New York’s leaders in sourcing quality ingredients from small farms and local purveyors. At Oceana, he uses the finest ingredients, combined with his classic training and contemporary influences. Telepan’s restaurant experience includes work in some of the world’s top kitchens and has apprenticed with the legendary Chef Alain Chapel at his eponymous threeMichelin-star restaurant outside Lyons, France. There he learned the importance of retaining the integrity of fresh ingredients in creating delicious food. A graduate of the Culinary Institute of America, Telepan has trained with Chef Daniel Boulud and Chef Gilbert Le Coze in New York. Then, in 2005 Chef Bill opened Telepan, the popular Upper West Side restaurant, which earned him a Michelin star among other accolades. Since 2008, Telepan has served as Executive Chef of Wellness In The School’s Cook for Kids Program. “We’re dedicated to improving children’s health by enriching lunch programs. It includes developing nutritious and appetizing school menus, training in-residence cooks and cafeteria staff,” he told us. “Teaching student, parents and teachers and engaging with professional chefs is an active step to overcoming childhood obesity.”
MORIMOTO RESTAURANTS Without question, Chef Morimoto has been the key influence in creating the bridge between the culinary traditions of his native Japan and the American palate. Doing so has brought intense excitement, precise technique, and perfectly balanced flavors to thousands of diners throughout the world. But it didn’t start that way.
BARBUTO You might consider Chef Jonathan Waxman one of the pioneers of the modern farm-to-table movement. In the 1970s, the native Californian sold Ferraris and played trombone before he enrolled in cooking school, first in San Francisco and later in Paris, at the famed La Varenne, where he mastered classic French cuisine. He returned to California and found his way to Chez Panisse, where he worked under the queen of the organic-and-local movement, Alice Waters. “I was fortunate to be mentored by Alice Waters. It doesn’t get any better than that. He went on to develop his own signature California cuisine at the famed Michael’s in Santa Monica, owned by restaurateur Michael McCarty. However, it wasn’t until he moved to New York City, that he reached celebrity in the 1980s when he opened Jams. (Waxman has since opened a reincarnation of Jams at 1 Hotel Central Park.) Currently, he is chef and owner of Barbuto in Manhattan’s West Village which continues to be a favorite for both locals and visitors alike.
Morimoto wanted to play professional baseball. After a shoulder injury had ended a promising career as a baseball catcher in Japan, Morimoto began studying sushi in his hometown of Hiroshima. He quickly grasped the technique of this exacting food art, and at age 24, opened his first restaurant. Five years later, he moved to America to explore new opportunities and possibilities. It was wasn’t too long before Morimoto joined the original Nobu restaurant and was soon named Executive Chef. In 1999, Chef Morimoto appeared on the Food Network’s Iron Chef where he was able to showcase his flawless technique and creativity with different ingredients. Two years later, he opened his first eponymous restaurant in Philadelphia. Morimoto expanded his culinary reach to opening restaurants in Mumbai and New Delhi. Then in 2006, the much-anticipated flagship restaurant, Morimoto New York opened. A decade later, his much-anticipated first ramen restaurant was launched in New York City, Momosan Ramen & Sake, which showcases his personal, modern take on traditional Japanese ramen. We were amazed at how this Iron Chef never seems to slow down. “More to do,” he laughed, “so, I better not stop!”
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His career has spanned more than four decades with no signs of slowing down. He is the 2016 James Beard Award winner for “Best Chef, New York City” and the author of cookbooks, A Great American Cook and Italian, My Way. Waxman loves tennis. “Healthy diet and being physically fit makes all the difference for athletes.” And although Waxman is no vegan, he contends that most Americans need to modify their diets for the sake of health and sustainability. That’s food for thought.