Corporate Executive Chef
Chaya Brasserie San Francisco
M Café – Melrose Ave & Beverly Hills
Chef Tachibe began training in formal French technique at the age of fifteen at the Hotel Ban Show Row in Nagasaki, Japan. He then served as an exchange chef at the restaurant Gannino in Milan, Italy, at the age of 21. Upon returning to Japan, he was named Executive Chef at La Marée de Chaya in Hayama, Japan. His experience with French and Italian cooking coupled with Japanese cuisine became the fusion that is now synonymous with Chaya Restaurants.
In 1981, Yuji Tsunoda, whose family has owned restaurants in Japan for over three hundred and ninety years, invited Chef Tachibe to accompany him and his family to Los Angeles to open the acclaimed La Petite Chaya, bringing a new style of "la nouvelle cuisine, which is now referred to as Franco-Japonaise", to the attention of Angeleno's. Twenty-seven years later, Chef Tachibe continues to command the menus and kitchens of the four California eateries, including Chaya Brasserie Los Angeles, Chaya Venice, Chaya Brasserie San Francisco and Chaya Downtown Los Angeles that opened in March 2009.
Chef Tachibe's latest undertaking has been creating and overseeing the launch and expansion of M Café. This new venture offers a café and deli-style restaurant, featuring contemporary macrobiotic cuisine. Chef Tachibe has been studying macrobiotic cuisine for the last fourteen years and is recognized and certified as a Kushi Macrobiotic Chef Premier at the Kushi Institute International. Chef Tachibe feels passionately that this is the most viable healthful lifestyle alternative. As Chef Tachibe had not been able to find a restaurant locally where he could enjoy both the flavorful foods that maintained these high standards and a lively, contemporary ambience, he decided to create it himself. Chef Tachibe opened the M Café on Melrose Avenue in Los Angeles in June 2005, and M Café Beverly Hills in February 2009.
Chef Lee Gross has been studying Macrobiotics, traditional
cuisines and alternative health since 1999. Having received
classical culinary training and undergraduate degrees from Johnson & Wales
University in Providence, Rhode Island, he pursued careers in the restaurant and retail food service industries. Lee gained experience under celebrated chefs from around the country, including such notables as Daniel Bruce at the Boston Harbor Hotel and Philippe Jeanty at Domaine Chandon in California’s Napa Valley. He also worked at Providence’s famed Al Forno Restaurant, under the tutelage of George Germon and Johanne Killeen. A chance meeting with Mina Dobic, the Macrobiotic counselor to Oscar-award winning actress Gwyneth Paltrow in 2001, led to Lee being recruited as Ms. Paltrow’s Personal Chef. Lee then joined Executive Chef Tachibe from Chaya and came on board as the opening Chef de Cuisine at M Café in 2005. Lee decided to head back to the East Coast in the fall of 2006 to start a family, but has continued to remain a Consulting Chef to M Café and he returns to California several times a year to work at M Café with Executive Chef Tachibe.
“I’m passionate about food”, Lee says, “Macrobiotics allows me to feel good about the food that I cook and serve. It brings integrity and wholesomeness to my cuisine. I hope this new concept can serve as a model for a sustainable future. Cuisine today should celebrate seasonal, locally procured produce, and be crafted with less reliance on animal products and processed foods. M Café offers a recipe for a better tomorrow”.