I recently met with chefs Daniel Patterson and Jeremy Fox to discuss their upcoming project, ~PLUM~ (and garden!), but the phone call I received yesterday from Fox held news of another trajectory: alas, he will no longer be involved in Patterson’s Plum project(s). So sorry, Oakland. Well, no need to cry just yet, because Fox is very close to signing a deal on a restaurant space; and who knows where that is, because he’s not talking (yet)—he doesn’t want to jinx it. (Of course I’m hoping for the 415.)
As for who is going to be in the kitchen at Plum, the talented Lauren Kiino will be the opening chef until the Bracina project at Jack London Square gets going in 2011. And Patterson is very close to hiring a chef de cuisine for Plum, so stand by. The opening date is still targeted at mid-September, and in the meantime, you can taste Plum preview meals at Il Cane Rosso on Monday nights in August—the one last night was reportedly all kinds of delicious.
As for the BIG QUESTION, yes, it was an amicable parting—like they say, timing is everything. Patterson found the news to be sudden, yes, but he wishes Fox well with his venture. Fox mentioned to me that he really enjoyed the work he has been doing with Patterson the past few months, and that they’ll still be cooking together at Le Grand Fooding in New York (along with Melissa Perello, Mourad Lahlou, Laurence Jossel, and James Syhabout).