Chef Pierre Chambrin has had a storied culinary career. Trained at Ecole des Metiers de L'Alimentation in Paris, he came up through the ranks the old-school way. He worked in some of the best restaurants in the country, in positions from apprentice to executive chef, ultimately running the kitchen at the White House under two presidents.
Get out this weekend and take advantage of the last few days of the 4th annual Clayton Restaurant Week, which wraps up Sunday, Jan. 27. The establishments participating this year include: Alexander’s Restaurant; Araka; Bar Napoli; Barcelona; Bocci Bar: Cardwell’s; Coastal Bistro & Bar; The Crossing; Crushed Red; J. Buck’s; Jimmy's On The Park; Mad Tomato; Oceano Bistro; Remy’s Kitchen & Wine Bar; Roxane; Ruth's Chris Steak House; and Tani Sushi Bistro. Participating restaurants are offering a special three-course dinner promotion for a fixed price of $25 per person, plus tax and tip. Guests also have the option of adding a $5 ‘Extra Helping’ donation to their dining bill to support Operation Food Search. More details are available at claytonrestaurantweek.net.
Mercy has named SHANNON SOCK (1) as executive VP of organizational effectiveness.
◆ New microbrewery 4 Hands Brewing Company has started brewing its beers on a commercial scale, and will be opening its tasting room to the public in December. Instead of running a kitchen on-site, food will come courtesy of a rotating roster of local food trucks. Co-owner KEVIN LEMP says so far, he’s been talking with the Cha Cha Chow, Pi, Guerilla Street Food and Seoul Taco trucks about bringing their wares to the tasting room. On the brewing side, look for the company’s four core beers—Cast Iron Oatmeal Brown, Divided Sky Rye IPA, Reprise Centennial Red and Single Speed Session—to be available in kegs initially for restaurant and bar use, and 22- ounce bottles shortly thereafter.
◆We’re sad to report that local legend MIKE ‘TALAYNA’ FAILLE passed away last week, on Oct. 27, from complications arising from a heart attack. The 73-year-old was famous for his Talayna’s Italian Restaurant, which closed in the late 1990s, along with a string of other restaurant projects, and was just getting ready to open a new venture, the Frontenac Grill, in West County. His family has announced the restaurant will still open to honor his dream.
◆L’Ecole Culinaire’s Academy for Culinary Development, which was introduced earlier this year, will soon have its own dedicated space. Construction is underway on a new space at 9200 Olive Blvd. to house the rapidly expanding academy curriculum. The 2,000-square-foot facility will have three main teaching areas and should be open sometime in late fall to house the 140 classes the school hopes to have available by the end of the year. L’Ecole also is hosting a wine dinner on Sept. 29, at 6:30 p.m. in The Presentation Room at the school’s Ladue campus. The dinner will feature wines from Grafton Winery. Call 587-2433 for reservations.
> Mad Tomato, the newest restaurant from Chef Vito Racanelli Jr. of Onesto Pizza & Trattoria fame, is finally ready to open, and they’re celebrating by helping out a worthy cause. On Friday, April 15, the restaurant, located at 8000 Carondelet Ave. in Clayton, will hold an opening party, dubbed ‘The Ripening of Mad Tomato,’ to benefit Operation Food Search (OFS). The event kicks off with a ribbon cutting at 5:30 p.m., followed by an open house, and will feature samples of the farm-to-table menu, Italian wines and desserts, courtesy of pastry chef Sally Sciaroni. Tickets are $30, with half of the proceeds going to OFS. For reservations, email firstname.lastname@example.org. Mad Tomato will be partnering again with OFS once they’re open to the public on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays through the end of May with their ‘communal table.’ Guests reserve a seat and order from a fixed menu, with a percentage of the proceeds going to OFS. The communal table menus will be posted online at madtomatostl.com.
Hollywood A-listers JIMMY FALLON and JENNIFER HUDSON are coming to St. Louis for the 22nd annual BOB COSTAS Benefit for SSM Cardinal Glennon Children’s Medical Center. Fallon, host of Late Night with Jimmy Fallon and a Saturday Night Live alum, is headlining the event. The musical entertainment will be provided by Hudson, the former American Idol finalist who went on to win an Academy Award for her performance in Dreamgirls and starred in the box office hit Sex and the City. Tickets to the April 17 event at the Fox Theatre are available by phone, 577-5605, or online at glennon.org.