Chef Mennie is a passionate innovator whose celebrated culinary career is award winning. He received his formal education at the renowned Culinary Institute of America and continued his classical training by studying under French master chef, Maxime Ribera, at Maxime’s in New York. Heading west, he trained with another French master at West Hollywood’s five-star legend, L’Orangerie. As the trend in California known as farm-to-table was budding, a young Mennie signed on for an intense stint at the iconic Spago, where using a wood-burning oven he began to follow a whole new set of culinary rules focusing on local products and simple preparation.
Returning to the east coast, Chef Mennie joined the kitchen of Gunter Seeger at the Mobil Five-Star Ritz Carlton Buckhead, where he continued to refine his style. In 1995, Atlanta visionary, Chef Gerry Klaskala, handpicked Gary to lead the culinary team at Canoe. During his ten-years at the restaurant, Canoe gained Mobil Four-Star status, which catapulted Chef Mennie—as one of the youngest chefs in America to receive this award—into regional stardom. In 2005, he opened Taurus and most recently served as the Executive Chef at The Livingston Restaurant at the Georgian Terrace Hotel.
Today, Chef Mennie’s newest addition to his long list of credits includes being named Executive Chef at The Woodruff Arts Center, an Atlanta icon and signature destination – an ideal match for this talented Chef. Recognized as one of the nation’s most prestigious arts centers, and the only center in the nation combining visual and performing arts, The Woodruff Arts Center is home to the Alliance Theatre, Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, High Museum of Art, and Young Audiences. Since 1968, The Woodruff Arts Center has served more than 30 million patrons and annually offers more than 3,300 performances and exhibitions. Its board selected Legendary Partners of Atlanta as its food and beverage solution provider after a lengthy and competitive review process.
Joe Bankoff, President and CEO of The Woodruff Arts Center, said “We are very excited to welcome Chef Gary Mennie to our campus as he has a proven track record of delivering extraordinary experiences for his guests’ enjoyment. We are confident he will bring the same level of excellence to all culinary endeavors at the Woodruff.”
Legendary Partners of Atlanta’s Tony Conway said, “We are thrilled to welcome Chef Gary, who has demonstrated a passion for bringing the finest cuisine to our wonderful city. He will bring a fresh new dining experience to this landmark facility and we are looking forward to welcoming him along with all of Atlanta to The Woodruff Arts Center.”
Serving twenty-one marquee performing arts centers through-out North America, Centerplate is known for its compelling food and beverage programs. “Chef Gary brings a superlative level of food and beverage expertise and passion to The Woodruff Arts Center. We are extremely excited to add Chef Mennie to this world-class facility.” said Des Hague, President and CEO of Centerplate.
Legendary Partners of Atlanta is scheduled to begin services at The Woodruff Art Center in the fall of 2010. Among its plans are a refreshed restaurant concept, enhancements to public food offerings, and offering an array of special event catering choices.
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