Executive Chef & V.P. of Culinary Development for Smith & Wollensky Restaurant Group
Award-winning American Chef David Burke has worked in some of the finest kitchens in the United States and Europe during his career. After creating the stellar cuisine and menus at New York's acclaimed Park Avenue Café, he has gone on to repeat his success at two Chicago restaurants, Park Avenue Café and Mrs. Park's Tavern. He has also created the menus for Maloney & Porcelli in New York and ONEcps, the newest addition to Alan Stillman's restaurants.
Upon graduating from The Culinary Institute of America, Chef Burke furthered his education and experience by working in the United States and abroad. He then studied pastry arts at the prestigious École Lenôtre in Plasir, France, and worked as a "stagier" throughout the country, including Troisgros in Roanne; with Marc Meneau at L'Espérance in St. Père Sous Vezelay; with Georges Blanc at Chez la Mère Blanc in Vonnas; and in Paris at Maison Blanche with Jose Lampreia, at Fauchon, and at Maoulin de la Vierge. Chef Burke then returned to the United States to assume the position of Executive Chef at the River Café, where he remained from December 1987 through October 1991. He then moved on to join Park Avenue Café as Executive Chef/Partner.
Burke's style continually pushes culinary boundaries. A self-confessed lover of challenges, Chef David Burke truly enjoys experimenting with food. Influenced by his international education and experience, he has developed a flair for translating classic World Cuisine into uniquely American creations. His food rates consistently high in taste, creativity and presentation.
Burke is the recipient of numerous awards and honors; the most prestigious of which is the Meilleurs Ouvriers de France Diploma, which he was awarded in 1988 at the International Food Festival held in Tokyo, Japan. At the same competition, he was also presented with the Nippon Award of Excellence by the Japanese government. In 1991, David Burke was named to the National Advisory Committee of Chefs in America and was voted "Chef of the Year." In 1996 Chef Burke received the first ever Auggie Award (named for August Escoffier) by The Culinary Institute of America, and was one of six recipients of the Robert Mondavi Culinary Award of Excellence in 1996, which he was once again awarded in 1997.
In 1994 David Burke, in conjunction with Perona Farms Food Specialties, started producing high quality signature gourmet food items for retail and wholesale distribution. The selections, distributed under the Park Avenue Café label, include Pastrami Salmon™, Moroccan Salmon™, and Salmon Bacon™. His cookbook, Cooking with David Burke of the Park Avenue Café, was published in 1995 by Alfred A. Knopf, and is now in its fifth printing. A second cookbook and a line of sauces are currently in the works. Most immediately, though, he is about to launch his favorite creation to date, David Burke's Gourmet Pops™. These gourmet savory bites will be available in three flavors: Smoked Salmon, Foie Gras and Goat Cheese.
The American Academy of Hospitality Sciences has bestowed upon Burke its 5-Diamond Award of Excellence. Chef magazine named Burke Chef of the Year — the first award ever given by this publication, and The Vatel Club honored Burke as Chef of the Year in 1998.
Taking on his most challenging project yet, Chef Burke opened ONEcps (September 2000) with Alan Stillman in the famed Edwardian Room at The Plaza Hotel. Focusing on classic bistro dishes, while adding his famous twists that has helped create his celebrity status, David has managed to create a hip yet classic brasserie menu in this historic location. National and international press have once again heralded him as a chef who is always at the forefront of new culinary trends and, after all these years, a force to be reckoned with.