New York City’s il Buco Alimentari e Vineria, whose executive chef Justin Smillie departed in June to pursue a restaurant with Stephen Starr, has named its new executive chef.
Donna Lennard, il Buco’s owner, has named Barcelona native Roger Martinez as the Smillie’s successor; the restaurant earned three stars from The New York Times in 2012 under Smillie’s guidance, so Martinez certainly has a large toque to fill.
Martinez has previously served as the chef de cuisine at Ferran Adrià’s Talaia Mar, Carles Abellan’s Comerç 24, and has been mentored by Joan Roca at his three-Michelin-starred restaurant, El Celler de Can Roca, and by Adrià at elBulli.
Most recently, chef Martinez was the chef de cuisine of Bouley restaurant from 2011 until 2014.
At il Buco Alimentari e Vineria, chef Martinez will continue the restaurant’s direction of “simple and rustic Italian and Mediterranean cuisine with a modern touch,” with local and seasonal ingredients, and imported items from purveyors in Italy.
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Karen Lo is an associate editor at The Daily Meal. Follow her on Twitter @appleplexy.