Restaurant Development & Design

FALL 2014

restaurant development + design is a user-driven resource for restaurant professionals charged with building new locations and remodeling existing units.

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4 6 • R E S T A U R A N T D E V E L O P M E N T + D E S I G N • F A L L 2 0 1 4 Client Vision. José's vision and personality drove a lot of the design directions. The private dining room is a good example, with the big reproduction of "Sugar Overload" and the chairs that look like upside-down chairs. If we were to follow a literal interpretation of his vision, the table would be up- side down on the ceiling and with the chairs glued around it, but we didn't think that would work. I have a feeling he may eventually fgure out how to pull that off. But that's sort of how he pushed us to think outside of the box. It's relevant to his cooking, and for us it was very exciting. White. Early American colonial detailing is very intricate, so we thought that if the private dining room is white and clean, we'll have a modern, fresh, minimal feel that is juxtaposed with the detailing that's the next layer. It was very intentional to have a clean, white backdrop. It's a bright space, but at night, with the lighting, it picks up a nice warm glow. Graphics. The graphics package was an important layer in this concept. For example, the tabletops in the bar are a solid white, modern surface but with custom graphic decals of farm animals embedded into them. They take this idea of celebrating farms and country life while making it a little modern, clean and somewhat understated. Graphics also come into play in the oversized script over the expo kitchen. It's an excerpt from the preamble to the Constitution — "We the people . . ." We liked that because it ft the Americana concept and also in an abstract way it speaks to José's passion, which is cooking for the people. Challenges. When you're working with an existing space or restaurant and you propose to move the bar, it's not always as easy as you think because of the structural fow, what's below, etcetera. So really pushing for a layout that made sense was the challenge here because, what we thought we could do, we couldn't. It's also always challenging to work in a hotel that's operating, to make sure the construction schedule works with the hotel schedule. Design Insight VINCENT CELANO, Celano Design Studio Colonial Motifs, Subtle Surprises With seating for 55, the bar and lounge area features a mix of cocktail-table soft seating and high-tops that seat 6. A large pantry shelf crafted to resemble an eclectic mix of vintage cabinets is positioned above the bar and helps to divide that space from the dining room behind. It's an example of how Celano's team used early American motifs, often drawing inspiration from period residen- tial styles, in the overall design strategy. Reclaimed oak foors and walls covered in white, beaded wood wainscot- ing and exposed brick provide a traditional backdrop for decidedly nontraditional de- cor touches. Large, framed early American portraits, for instance, become modern art elements thanks to bold blue stripes painted across their surfaces. "The idea was to take the attention away from the actual content, from the image itself, and say, 'Look, the artwork isn't just the image — it's the frame, it's some of the detail- ing on the frame, it's where it's hung and how it becomes part of the space,'" says Celano, whose team handled the graphics package for the restaurant as well as the design. "It's the idea of stepping away and creating another conversation, of bringing that early interpretation forward and giving it relevance for today." Looking up, guests in the bar/lounge area get another taste of the unexpected. Wooden beams across the ceiling provide a The whimsically designed private dining room seats up to 18 guests and provides a view into the kitchen through a large residential-style window. Custom- made wooden chairs surround the white, lacquered table. Photo by Ken Wyner

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