Chefs are always moving around. They find more lucrative jobs or less stressful kitchens, or they quit a restaurant to open their own. And sometimes, they get lured away by another restaurateur. That's what happened to pastry chef Blair Cobbett, who was working as the chef for Genessee Royale Bistro and also making pies for the breakfast-and-lunch-only venue. Cobbett is now the pastry chef for Justus Drugstore.
"It was very kind of Jonathan Justus to send one of his sous chefs into my kitchen to get Blair's phone number," says Todd Schulte, owner of Genessee Royale.
Justus says he had tried to hire Cobbett three years ago, but the timing wasn't right. When his last pastry chef, Mike Pisciotto, left to become a chocolatier in New Hampshire, Justus offered Cobbett the job again. She took it.
"Blair is an extremely talented individual," Schulte says. "We were recently talking about how rare it is in Kansas City to find a pastry chef position. And then she was offered one. But I want her to be happy and do well."
Schulte has hired Aaron Reed — formerly of Bluestem and Michael Smith — to oversee the Genessee Royale kitchen. "We're not going to serve pies anymore," Schulte says. "That was Blair's specialty. We're going to create a new dessert program for this restaurant."