David Felton, Wonder
The newest inductee into TPW’s elite chefs-pick-chefs club of top toques in the Garden State has left his distinguished mark on some of New Jersey’s most acclaimed restaurants. Today, he’s also one of the anointed at Wonder, a food-tech enterprise looking to revolutionize dining.
Kara Decker, 100 Steps
The newest inductee into TPW’s elite chef-picks-chef club of top toques in the Garden State hails from the same Union County community where she’s leading a kitchen today – and pushing boundaries to deliver detail-centric takes on the modern seasonal vernacular.
Uttam Rawat, Swadist
The newest inductee into TPW’s elite chef-picks-chef club of top Garden State toques came from India to head kitchens for the Moghul group of restaurants. In 2019, he struck out on his own with a modest storefront in Jersey City’s India Square in which he serves bold, personalized dishes and dazzling renditions of classics that mesmerize his selector, Rakesh Ramola of Indeblue.
Rakesh Ramola: Indeblue
The newest inductee into TPW’s elite chef-picks-chef club of top Garden State toques juggles tradition with innovation masterfully at the modern Indian restaurant he first opened in Collingswood, then reincarnated last year in Cherry Hill, according to his selector and admirer Elias Bitar. It’s what happens when a well-traveled explorer unleashes a worldly command of spices.
Elias Bitar: Norma’s
The newest inductee into TPW’s elite chef-picks-chef club of top Garden State toques “does it all” at his family’s Eastern Mediterranean mecca in Cherry Hill, his selector Danny Childs notes, “from making his own pita, pickles and labneh to donating thousands of meals to refugees to “uniting community” through a very special farm partnership.
A Talented Twenty
As 2022 draws to a close today, we take stock of those honored by their peers with induction into TPW’s chef-picks-chef society of top toques.
Danny Childs, The Farm and Fisherman
The first mixologist to be inducted into TPW’s elite chef-picks-chef club of top toques is “a force to be reckoned with,” according to his selector Melissa McGrath. The drinks chef, meanwhile, toasts the terroir of the Garden State, where he believes he’s “just scratching the surface” for inspiration.
Melissa McGrath, Sweet Amalia Market & Kitchen
The chef whose marquee ingredient is the Garden State’s most revered and sought-after oyster is the newest inductee into TPW’s chef-picks-chef club of top toques. Selector and ardent fan Shanti Mignogna pins it as a mutual admiration society among extraordinary talents.
Shanti Mignogna, Talula’s
The influential chef who never stops thinking, never stops creating and never will stop building community is the newest inductee into TPW's chef-picks-chef club of top toques. As the owner of the instantly iconic restaurant in Asbury Park reflects, she also looks forward – and inside, to see what she can do to further the industry she loves.
Alex Saneski, APEM
A chef who completely breaks the mold to redefine so-called “premium” ice cream today is inducted into the elite chef-picks-chef society of highest quality in the Garden State. It’s fitting that this Passaic native set up shop in Bloomfield, where he could tap New Jersey’s resources and mine our people as well for inspiration.
Arben Gasi, Le French Dad Boulangerie
The perfect baguette – and many more very French baked goods – have made this true boulangerie in Montclair a mecca. Now its chef-owner is being inducted into our elite club of top toques, the chef-picks-chef society of highest quality in the Garden State.
Renee Faris: Erie Coffeeshop & Bakery
A pastry chef with a distinctive voice who came home to the Garden State to practice her craft in downtown Rutherford is the newest member of our elite club of top toques. Erie is where “tradition blends with seasonal whimsy” and the devoted line up to catch whatever is coming out of the oven.