We asked Thomas Keller about that rumor that Jonathan Benno will soon be leaving Per Se after five years in the kitchen. While Chef Keller says no exact timeline is in place just yet, it sounds like its indeed only a matter of time. Heres the official statement.
We have always understood that those who have found success as part of our team will go on to lead their own restaurants. I am a firm believer in the importance of mentorship and so it is always a great joy to see our chefs become mentors in their own right. Jonathan has been crucially important to the successful opening and all the subsequent acclaim received by Per Se. His contributions as an individual have been invaluable but he has also built a team that will continue to uphold our standards after he has moved on.
During our time together I have sought to help Jonathan towards his dream of opening his own restaurant. While he does not yet have a definite timeline in place for his departure, I am supportive of all his explorations as he looks forward to the next chapter in his career. He will always enjoy my full support and gratitude for all that Per Se has achieved through his leadership.
Of course, this only sparks more questions: Who will replace Benno? And just what and where will Bennos restaurant be? Were looking forward to finding out.
Earlier: Benno Leaving Per Se?