Thursday, January 2, 2014 at 1:29 p.m.
Jack Riebel competing at this year's City Pages Iron Fork
City Pages file photo
Big changes are afoot at Butcher & the Boar. This morning, Mpls.St.Paul Magazine reported
that executive chef and part-owner Jack Riebel had left the critically acclaimed, foodie-favorite restaurant. We reached Riebel, who is currently on vacation in Charleston, to discuss what the news means for him.
"It was time for something new," Riebel explained. His remaining partners bought him out in an amicable parting of ways. He will continue to work on consulting projects, including the revamp of the old Joe's Garage restaurant. That project has changed from the original concept, and Riebel was reticent to discuss the details. "We've always wanted it to be an oyster bar," he said. Beyond that, we know that both the name "Triton" and chef David Yusefzadeh have dropped off the project.
As for his time at Butcher & the Boar, Riebel said, "It's been a great experience. I mean, anything that brings you to the Beard Award mention for Best New Restaurant is something special." Butcher & the Boar was a semi-finalist for Best New Restaurant at the James Beard Awards this year; Riebel personally was a finalist for Best Chef Midwest.
It was always refreshing to see Riebel suited up and working the line at Butcher & the Boar. Hard work is in his blood and he's not one to ever rest on his laurels. As he pointed out, "This was my shortest job. I don't usually move around much."
After soaking up some Southern culture and cuisine in Charleston, he aims to get back and get down to work. "Frankly, my phone is ringing off the hook. We just couldn't discuss anything until after the First," he said. Again, he was mum on the specifics, but don't be surprised if you see him popping up in some other much-lauded kitchens for short stints.
Before you write off the restaurant, know that Peter Botcher, the sous chef and the original "butcher" of the name, has risen in the ranks to take over as executive chef. Botcher, who did not immediately return requests for comment, has run the sausage machines since the beginning. We're looking forward to the same quality we've come to expect from this darling of the Twin Cities dining scene.
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