A talented chef is bringing his Michelin-star resume to Houston from New York. Aaron Bludorn announced that he's leaving his position to as executive chef at Café Boulud to open a restaurant in Houston.
Yep, cats out of the bag, I’m leaving @cafebouludny after 10 years, Friday will be my last service as the executive chef. Thank you to the incredible @danielboulud, you’re our link to the legacy of French cuisine, our inspiration to travel the world without ever leaving our kitchen and most of all an amazing mentor who dares us to be better than we could have imagined possible. I like to think we stand on the shoulders of giants and this is nothing short of the truth. As I move to this next chapter in my life, I reflect fondly on the times I have had in this kitchen. It truly has been an amazing experience and one that has changed me forever. Thank you to @gavinkaysen for believing in me the same way that I believe in @jerrodzif and how he will bring this restaurant into its next phase. My wife @vpbludorn and I will be moving to Houston, TX. I couldn’t be more excited for the new adventures we will have. As I like to tell cooks who move on, “Never forget where you’ve been, always know where you’re going” See y’all in Texas! 📸 @pierrotinnyc
May 29, 2019 at 1:08pm PDT
Bludorn tells CultureMap that the new restaurant will be "a modern French-American restaurant in a polished and charismatic setting." The chef added that he's targeting 2020 for the opening but is keeping details such as the name and location under wraps for now.
Superstar chef Daniel Boulud paid tribute to Bludorn in an Instagram post of his own, writing "I’m so proud of how he has grown into his position with focus, ambition and confidence, always keeping a positive attitude, and with incredible respect to me, our team at Café, and our community for whom he participated in many fundraising events."
Considering his professional experience includes 10 years working at Café Boulud for superstar chef Daniel Boulud — including six as executive chef — that's reason enough for excitement, but his wife, Victoria Pappas Bludorn, brings significant experience to the project, too.
In addition to being the daughter of Pappas Restaurants co-owner Chris Pappas, she worked as an "operations assistant at the Dinex Group, which is the New York management company for the restaurants of Daniel Boulud," according to the couple's wedding announcement in the New York Times. Just to be clear, the restaurant won't be affiliated with Pappas Restaurants, per a representative, but it certainly can't hurt to have grown up in such a successful family.
Reality TV watchers may recognize Bludorn's name from his time on Netflix's cooking competition show The Final Table. Paired with Scottish chef Graham Campbell, the chef demonstrated an ability to blend French technique with a number of international cuisines. In the Japan episode, Yoshihiro Narisawa called Bludorn's uni panna cotta "perfect" but eliminated the duo for making the portion too large.
Needless to say, Houstonians are unlikely to complain about "too much" uni. They'll certainly want to keep their eyes on Bludorn's progress as he moves toward opening his Houston restaurant.