Masas Fact Sheet Final

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648 Bush Street Between Powell and Stockton Streets San Francisco, CA 94108 415-989-7154 California French Gregory Short John McKee Alan Murray, MS Sergio Mendoza Orlando Diaz-Azcuy, Orlando Diaz-Azcuy Designs, San Francisco Chef Gregory Short changes menu items daily at Masa’s and rarely repeats himself. There are three prix fixed menus: • • • Five courses, $95 per person/$59 wine pairing Five courses, vegetarian, $95 per person/$59 wine pairing Nine courses, $155 per person/$95 wine pairing

Cuisine Executive Chef Executive Pastry Chef Sommelier General Manager Interior Design



The central hammered bronze sculpture by artist Albert Guibara overlooks the serene, 65-seat main dining room surrounded by warm and rich chocolate brown walls, dining room chairs covered in classic toile d’Juoy fabric, and elegant mohair banquettes. Lighting is romantically set by red hanging silk lanterns. The foyer and bar, both warm beige limestone, are separated from the dining room by a curtain of luminous white satin fabric.


AT EXECUTIVE HOTEL VINTAGE COURT 648 BUSH STREET  SAN FRANCISCO, CA 94108  (415) 989-7154  FAX (415) 989-3141

Masa’s Fact Sheet/2

Private Dining Options

Main Dining Room: Full seating for 65 guests. Wine Cellar Dining Room: Accommodates 10-12 guests. Buy-outs are available. Dinner service offered Tuesday through Saturday beginning at 5:30 p.m. Reservations recommended. Phone: 415-989-7514 Online: or Email: Valet service available Sutter & Stockton Garage in close proximity Business casual Yes Visa, Mastercard, American Express, Diners Club, Discover, JCB Ellipses Public Relations, Inc. Diana Gil-Osorio 415-728-5803


Reservation Options


Attire Wheelchair Accessible Credit Cards Media Contacts:

Tami von Isakovics 415-834-5492

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MASA’S RESTAURANT Critical Acclaim
“If you were scurrying down Bush Street, just north of Union Square, you might miss the tiny glass awning that marks the entrance to Masa’s. But behind the draped windows that frame this restaurant (connected to the Hotel Vintage Court), you’ll find a gorgeously appointed dining room filled with cushy mohair banquettes and enormous bright red lampshades. How’s the food hold up under all that trendiness? Exceedingly well, thanks to the creative mind of Chef Gregory Short who spins a wide range of special ingredients into his contemporary, French-influenced fare.” - Awarded one Michelin Star, Michelin Guide, San Francisco, 2009 “Though it may be ‘less trendy’ than some other top-tier restaurants, ‘you can always count on’ this Downtown ‘classic’ (since 1983) for ‘nonstop palate pleasure’ and ‘polished professional’ service; ‘believe everything you hear’ about chef Gregory Short’s ‘exquisite’ six- and nine-course New French tasting menus and the ‘fabulous sommelier’ ‘who works off an equally great wine list’; ‘gadzooks, it’s very dear’, but ‘worth every farthing’ considering the ‘wonderful quiet atmosphere’ that’s sure to ‘impress that someone special.’” -Zagat San Francisco, 2009 “This year Masa’s will celebrate 25 years, and…it remains one of the top white-tablecloth restaurants in the Bay Area. Thanks to the sleek Orlando Diaz-Azcuy design and the food crafted by Gregory Short, who spent seven years at the French Laundry, the place is in top form. Short creates a nightly dégustation menu that might include crab salad with kanzuri aioli and tangerine gelee, or roasted lamb with chickpea cakes and lamb jus with rosemary. There’s also an all-vegetable menu.” – San Francisco Chronicle top 100 Bay Area Restaurants, 2008 “What more can I say, I did not go to Masa’s seeking perfection. But that evening, it found me. I left my heart in San Francisco, in Masa’s on 648 Bush Street, to be precise.” -Chowhound 2008 “Masa’s is certainly a restaurant to watch. When I first visited the restaurant this year, in February, the meal was excellent, but now it’s even better as Short continues to grow into his new position. Masa’s may be just shy of a four-star rating, but in no time at all could easily find its way to the top…One of the most memorable experiences in San Francisco.” 1/2 -San Francisco Chronicle review, Michael Bauer, 2005


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Masa’s Critical Acclaim/2

“Masa's came full circle in the kitchen when former chef Julian Serrano's one-time stagiaire Richard Reddington signed on as temporary chef in residence when Ron Siegel departed. Now Gregory Short, former chef de cuisine at The Loft at Montage Resort & Spa in Laguna Beach, has assumed executive chef duties. The tradition of three tasting menus continues---four, six and nine courses with a vegetarian option. Each has its glories, like the chilled tomato soup with osetra caviar and lobster or the carnaroli risotto with squash blossoms and fava beans. The chilled foie gras arrives with peach and lavender honey jam, Gewurztraminer gelée and perfectly toasted brioche. Desserts include warm blueberry beignets with raspberry ice cream soda. The dining room maintains a quiet elegance with moody chocolate-brown walls and tastefully romantic lighting. The gratifying wine list and gracious service deserve high marks.” (17/20 rating)

“Masa’s truly deserves its ranking as one of SF’s best restaurants... there is no ‘over-ranking’ going on here. We did a six-course tasting menu and a seven-course truffle tasting menu. Both would easily be judged to be truly exceptional, even by rigorous ‘elevated’ standards of SF foodies. While every dish (e.g., caramelized cauliflower soup, squash, marrow custard, oxtail ravioli and halibut) was creatively structured, every single one seemed to hearken back to a home-style foundation that was familiar. Wonderful umami flavors, especially. The wine pairings were exceptional in the very capable hands of Alan. Go and enjoy.” -Yelp review, 2008 “Remember that time you were waited on hand and foot and everything fell into place and nothing was out of place and somehow time stood still at every bite, every glass clink, every sip of every Pinot and every shave of every truffle hit your tongue just right, and you had your faith restored in not only humanity, but SF, interior design, and the French all at once? Yeah, that's Masa's.” -Yelp review, 2008

“If you are looking for great ingredients, prepared with care and understated elegance, and served by folks who know what they are doing, then go to Masa's. No need to hesitate.” -Citysearch, 2007 “The whole place from the food to the service to the decor was elegant without being stuffy. The food was outstanding without being pretentious. All in all, a very special night.” -Citysearch, 2006

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MASA’S RESTAURANT History For over 25 years, Masa’s Restaurant, located on the border San Francisco’s bustling Nob Hill and Union Square districts, is one of the nation’s leading fine dining restaurants specializing in California French cuisine. The story began when Chef Masataka “Masa” Kobayashi of Auberge du Soleil in California’s Napa Valley was persuaded to headline his own restaurant in San Francisco, utilizing his exceptional talent for French cuisine. His namesake, Masa’s, opened in 1983 and became an instant success. Chef Julian Serrano, a native of Madrid and trained by Masa, manned the stoves for fourteen prolific years after Masa’s untimely passing in 1984, and the restaurant continued to thrive, receiving countless awards and media praise under his culinary direction. He later opened Picasso at the Bellagio in Las Vegas as Executive Chef. Following Serrano’s departure, star Chef Ron Siegel brought his unique talent to Masa’s kitchen. Garnering a San Francisco Chronicle four-star review for his work at Charles Nob Hill in San Francisco, Siegel is known as the first American chef to win the Japanese “Iron Chef” competition. During his tenure, the restaurant’s interior design was completely renewed in 2001 by celebrated San Francisco designer Orlando Diaz-Azcuy, adding a modern luster to the already shining restaurant. After Siegel’s departure, Chef Richard Reddington, another Auberge du Soleil alumnus and award-winning chef, joined Masa’s on a consulting basis until the hiring of Chef Gregory Short in 2004. A Montana native trained at the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, New York, Chef Short worked through the ranks at Thomas Keller’s worldrenowned French Laundry in Yountville, Calif., for seven years, including four years as Keller’s sous chef. He had recently opened The Loft Restaurant at Montage Resort and Spa in Laguna Beach, Calif., when he received the call asking him to return to Northern California to co-chef with Reddington. Short took over the “top toque” in October 2004. Masa’s celebrates 26 years in 2009. A young, fresh, highly talented team leads the restaurant today. In the past five years Masa’s has become a more casual, flexible and frequent dining destination for guests near and far. It appeals to a broad range of clientele who demand flexibility, impeccable service and extraordinary cuisine.

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Gregory Short Executive Chef Masa’s Restaurant
A Bozeman, Montana native, Gregory Short’s passion for the food industry propelled him to Hyde Park, New York, where he graduated in 1993 from the Culinary Institute of America. He continued his education and refined his talents while cooking under the watchful eye of David Kellaway at the Salish Lodge in Snoqualmie, Washington. After three years, Short was offered the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to further cultivate his education with Thomas Keller at the world-famous French Laundry in Yountville, Calif. While at The French Laundry, Chef Short moved up through the ranks from poissonier to garde manger and saucier, followed by four years as Keller’s sous chef. In 1999, after Short had proven his ability, Keller sent him to France for an extended culinary education. The first restaurant, in Paris, was Taillevant, a very classic French restaurant where Keller himself had worked. Short then secured three other “stage” positions at Pierre Orsi in Lyon and La Cote D’Or in Burgundy. Short then went on to Montpellier, a town on the Mediterranean, to work at the renowned Le Jardin Des Sens. “Coming to Montpellier was like a breath of fresh air,” recalls Short. “It was a beautiful town with sunny weather, blue skies, beautiful produce and friendly people. My co-chefs gave me a lot of respect and responsibilities. It was a nice change from Burgundy where the other cooks didn’t talk to me at all!” The French adventure clearly paid off for Short. In 2001, he was nominated by Keller and his peers at The French Laundy for the Bertoli Sous Chef Awards Competition where he won first prize. In 2003, Short was offered the opportunity to open The Loft, the Montage Resort and Spa’s then new restaurant in Laguna Beach, Calif. “Opening a new restaurant is quite an experience, from hiring a team of people to setting up all of the systems. You don’t know what to expect because everything is brand new and has never been tried.” Short got a call at the Loft asking him to return to Northern California to co-chef with Richard Reddington, chef-in-residence at Masa’s Restaurant. “I had never before wanted to work in a big city, but when that call came I was ready for it. I was hungry for the challenge.” Short took over “top toque” in October 2004. For over 25 years, Masa’s, popularly regarded as one the finest French restaurants in the world, has made its reputation with a succession of chefs that have deftly walked the line between culinary adventure and classicism. Short follows in the “hall-of-fame” roster of award-winning chefs originally started by Masataki Kobayashi and continued by star master chefs Julian Serrano, Ron Siegel and Richard Reddington. “To be part of the continuing history of Masa’s is an honor. As we enter our 26th year we continue to advance with the changes happening in the industry. Today, Masa’s offers a world-class standard in California French cuisine while staying true to the best products available. California is an amazing place to live, year-round. I believe the quality of ingredients found throughout the West Coast exceeds expectations. With so many exciting foods and local, organic purveyors at my fingertips, I see it as my personal duty to keep Masas focused exclusively on taste, aesthetics and the combination and concentration of flavors.”

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Alan Murray Master Sommelier Masa’s Restaurant Master Sommelier Alan Murray had his first glass of “quality wine” in the Hunter Valley, north of Sydney, Australia, where he was raised. After that glass, he spent nearly all of his vacations in Australia’s diverse wine regions, tasting, and learning as much as possible. “I haven’t stopped asking questions since,” states Murray. In 1998, Murray moved to San Francisco where he took a job at Rubicon restaurant in order to work with the highly esteemed Master Sommelier Larry Stone, who was running an ambitious wine program and had compiled an encyclopedic wine cellar. With Stone’s encouragement, Murray began working towards his Master Sommelier diploma with the Court of Master Sommeliers. He became wine director at Masa’s in 2001 and was awarded his Master Sommelier diploma in February 2005. In doing so, Murray became the first Australian to earn that distinction. Currently Alan is studying for the Master of Wine Certification. Murray has recently been enamored with Austrian Rieslings. “They are some of the finest dry Rieslings and dry wines you will find,” said Murray. One of his favorites, Prager, has “a beautiful dry style with perfect balance between power and elegance.” Masa’s wine list features many small production wines from California, Burgundy, the Rhone Valley and Germany. “I like to collect delicate wines from around the globe. Chef Gregory Short’s food is balanced and very elegant, so I incorporate delicate wines so as not to overpower the food,” he said. “Even with a trend toward higher prices for the limited production wines, we continue to strive to offer a sincerely amazing selection of wines that I believe represent the best vintners around the globe.” For over 25 years, the sommeliers at Masa’s have prided themselves on their extensive knowledge and familiarity with wines from around the world. “It is an honor to continue this tradition,” said Murray. “It’s about what I can do to enhance the guests’ total experience. The more I put into wine, the more I have received in return.”

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John McKee Executive Pastry Chef Masa’s Restaurant
A Bay Area native, John McKee grew up in Alameda, Calif., and has over 30 years’ experience working with pastries and breads. McKee’s interest in food began early in life. At the age of 16, he had a job delivering pizzas for a shop run by the former Westin St. Francis Hotel pastry chef, Romano Bonagure, and was inspired to pursue a career specifically focused on desserts. “Romano told me that if I wanted to become a pastry chef I would have to go to school,” recalled McKee. “There was a point when I realized everyone really loves dessert and I love the precision and creativity of pastry.” Heading the advice of his mentor, the young McKee promptly enrolled in the culinary program at City College, which was one of the premiere cooking schools at the time. McKee’s early career highlights included a position as a pastry cook at San Francisco’s Westin St. Francis Hotel in 1979, as a consultant for Royal Cruise Line from 1991 to 1994, and 15 years as co-owner of La Seine Bakery in San Francisco beginning in 1983. La Seine’s clientele included the Clift and Four Seasons hotels, conventions at the San Jose Convention center, and First and Business Classes at United Airlines and Air France. Personal La Seine highlights for McKee included baking for the President of France and creating petit fours for Jimmy Carter at the Democratic National Convention. In 2000, McKee moved to Oregon to be with his daughter and joined Oritalia, an Asian/Mediterranean fine dining restaurant at The Westin in Portland. “At Oritalia, I gained my first experience in a restaurant setting and I discovered how much I loved working on the presentation and appearance of my desserts.” McKee moved back to San Francisco in January of 2002 to consult with City Baking Company, which sells pastries to Peet’s Coffee, and other highly regarded outlets. Many of Peet’s preferred pastries, including their best-selling croissant, are based on original recipes from McKee. Following his work at City Baking Co., McKee spent two years as Executive Pastry Chef at Noe Valley Bread and Baking Company in San Francisco, where he was responsible for the creation of all pastry, cake and dessert selections. In 2005, McKee became a Baking and Pastry Instructor at the California Culinary Academy where he taught classes in cakes, plated desserts, chocolate and pulled sugar. McKee joined Masa’s as Executive Pastry Chef in November 2007. “I loved teaching and thought I would continue forever, but then the opportunity at Masa’s presented itself. The reputation and prestige of the restaurant is unsurpassed. I can honestly say that Masa’s is the only place for which I would have ever left teaching. I feel very proud of what we’re accomplishing, and honored to be able to uphold the legacy of passionate and dedicated chefs that keep Masa’s dream alive.”

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Sergio Mendoza General Manager Masa’s Restaurant
Upon joining the Masa’s team in May 2009, Sergio Mendoza brought more than 15 years of experience launching and managing a portfolio of premiere hotels and restaurants throughout the United States and Mexico. Merging his experience and passion for the hospitality industry, he now oversees every part of the guest experience at Masa’s, directs the service training and ensures that each guest leaves happy. Prior to joining Masa’s he was general manager for San Francisco’s Hotel Diva and Hotel Kensington, both owned by Personality Hotels. “I’m excited to be a part of such an amazing dining institution in San Francisco and create the next chapter in its successful history. A dinner at Masa’s is not just a dinner—it’s a celebration of the remarkable quality of meats and produce we have at our doorstep. Gregory Short is one of the region’s best, most talented chefs and to work with him and lead the legendary service team of Masa’s is an honor.” A native of southern Mexico, Mendoza attended preparatory school in Boston before graduating from the University of Denver in 1981 with a business degree in hotel and restaurant management. Rising quickly through back-of-house positions with various properties, including positions in 1991 to 1993 as director of housekeeping at the Sandestin Beach Resort in Destin, Fla., and the Clarion Hotel, in Cincinnati, Ohio, he accepted a position as executive assistant manager at the luxurious, all-inclusive Continental Villas Plaza on the Mexican Caribbean in 1992. This was followed by his first general manager position at the 200-villa, fivestar private resort, the Royal Mayan, operated by Royal Resorts, in Cancun, Mexico, in 1993. Mendoza moved back to the United States in 1996 as assistant director of food and beverage at the 323-room Hilton Resort at Hilton Head Island, S.C., which included managing two full-service restaurants, delicatessen, pool restaurant and bar, nightclub, catering operations and off-premise golf food and beverage concessions. His success in Hilton Head lead to a move across the country and a promotion to assistant general manager at the Sunnyvale Hilton in Sunnyvale, Calif., in 1998. He later was the rooms division director at the Hayes Mansion and Conference Center in San Jose, Calif., from 1998 to 1999, where he coordinated daily operations for the front office, reservations, guest services, housekeeping, maintenance and loss prevention. Mendoza then rejoined Hilton for a year as rooms manager at the Hilton San Francisco, a 1,896-room corporate and convention hotel in the heart of The City. From 2000 to 2001, Mendoza was the director of operations for Joie de Vivre Hospitality, where he managed all pre-opening logistics for two properties, including Caliente Tropics Hotel in Palm Springs, Calif. Restaurant management lured Mendoza away from the world of hotels in 2001 when he accepted the position of opening general manager at Vin Santo Ristorante, a 90-seat fine dining restaurant in San Jose where over half of the customers each night were repeat guests. He later joined bacar restaurant in 2003 as restaurant manager, where he managed daily operations, staffing, training, private dining and a wine inventory of more than 800 varietals. He joined Personality Hotels in 2004 as general manger of Hotel Diva and then of both Hotel Diva and Kensington Park Hotel. Now at Masa’s, Mendoza works with the team to create an outstanding dining experience and uphold the restaurant’s reputation as one of the finest California-French destinations in San Francisco.

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