Exeters Vino E Vivo Chef Named James Beard Award Semifinalist For Best Chef In Northeast

Exeters Vino E Vivo Chef Named James Beard Award Semifinalist For Best Chef In Northeast

EXETER - Vino e Vivo Chef Paul Callahan was one of 20 semi-finalists for the 2023 James Beard Foundation Award for Best Chef in the Northeast.

The James Beard Foundation announces finalists for its annual Celebrity Restaurant and Chef Awards on Jan. 25. Callahan is one of two semifinalists in the New Hampshire category. The second is Jeff Fournier of Thompson House Dining in Jackson.

This year, dozens of New England restaurants were recognized as semifinalists. Chef David Vargas of Vida Cantina in Portsmouth is a National Outstanding Chef Award semi-finalist.

The semifinalists will be announced on March 29. The final winner will be announced at the awards ceremony on June 5.

Callahan, a Brentwood resident, is the executive chef of Vino e Vivo, a 24-seat wine bar, as of July 2021. He previously worked at Sea & Brain in Newburyport, Massachusetts. He is known for his creative approach to menu items such as Duck Fat Fritters with Quince, Humboldt and Tassoham Cloud Cheese, Coffee-Rubbed Duck Breast with Snail Bread Pudding, and Gingerbread and Mole.

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The community is proud of the restaurant.

“Exeter is a great city and the community really loves our menu and our creative approach to cooking,” says Callahan. "I have a great staff and a great team and I couldn't have done it without them."

Vino e Vivo was founded in 2018 by Exeter resident Tony Calindrello based on two guiding influences. Calendrello first inspired him to create the "third place," as described in Ray Oldenburg's 1998 book, "The Great Good Place," which is "a place where people can come together, house pressure and can put work aside, and just be." ". The joy of good company and good conversation. The second is European restaurant/wine bar culture, where cafes and bars form the backbone of society and serve as local gathering places.

The environment is intentionally created to encourage dialogue and interaction. The restaurant is small and cozy, there are no TVs, there are soundproof panels, the music volume is low, and the servers are friendly and knowledgeable.

Callahan embraces this sense of community in the restaurant, as Calendrello often comes out to talk to customers.

"Paul is not only an innovative chef, but also friendly and fun to work with. These qualities include interactions with our guests or the kitchen team that complement each other", says Calinderello.

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Callahan is known for coaching other members of the team, such as chef John Parsons, who first worked as a dishwasher at a Newburyport restaurant. In addition, it is easily accessible and an example of this is the inclusion of a table for two at the edge of the kitchen.

“When people come to the Chef's Table, we can expand a bit and be more creative with our offerings. And this is the first time Chef's Table has eaten at Vino e Vivo,” said Callahan. "So they're eating food that they don't normally try, and that's not necessarily on our regular menu, and that makes it easier for them the next time they come. And for people who have eaten here, they're like, "You know what we expect in Chef's Table, it's a little different, and that's where we can get creative."

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After attending art college, Callahan entered the restaurant business and expanded into fine dining at Barbara Lynch's The Butcher Shop, Frank McClelland's Espalier, Grass Lyceum (a 30-hour community dining experience plaza that is a food source). From the Yards) and winner of North Shore Magazine's 8th Kitchen & Spirit Award "Best New Restaurant".

The mission of the James Beard Awards is to recognize outstanding talent and achievements in the culinary arts, hospitality, media and the wider food system, as well as a commitment to a culture of racial and gender equality, community, sustainability and opportunity for all. To grow.

This article originally appeared in the Portsmouth Herald: Chef Vino e Vivo from Exeter is a James Beard Award North East semifinalist

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