Right on the heels of her James Beard Award win for Rising Star Chef, Jessica Largey has announced that she will be leaving her post as chef de cuisine of Manresa. Inside Scoop reports that Largey, who has spent six years in Manresa's kitchen (and four as chef de cuisine), will depart with the blessing of chef David Kinch. "She is one of the most talented natural cooks I have ever encountered, smart, organized, hard working," Kinch told Inside Scoop. "It's an unbeatable combination." And Largey had similar sentiments to share about the crew at Manresa and her mentor, Kinch, saying she will "always consider the restaurant to be a home." For the moment, there is no replacement lined up for Largey.
Largey, whose accolades also include Eater Young Guns 2013, Chronicle and StarChefs Rising Star Chef awards, and Zagat 30 under 30 recognition, will be a hard act to follow, especially considering that Kinch's admission that he has "rarely [had] a culinary rapport with anyone in the Manresa kitchen." But with filming underway for his season of The Mind of a Chef, Manresa expanding for the first time with ManresaBread (and considering more projects), and increased participation in out-of-town events like the Grand Gelinaz Shuffle, Kinch will definitely need to find someone new to help keep the home fires burning. As for Largey, she plans do a bit of traveling before nailing down her next project.