Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Alexandria Restaurant Partners Names Lisa Marie Frantz Executive Chef of The Majestic Cafe

From our friends at The Majestic Cafe...

David Clapp and Dave Nichols of Alexandria Restaurant Partners (ARP) are pleased to announce the appointment of Lisa Marie Frantz as executive chef of The Majestic Cafe, located at 911 King Street in Old Town, Alexandria, Virginia. Frantz brings over eight years of experience helming top kitchens, to her role as executive chef of the 83 year old establishment. She will work under the direction of ARP’s Corporate Executive Chef Graham Duncan to serve classic dishes with a Southern twist, with a big emphasis on what’s local and in season, sourced within the great Commonwealth of Virginia whenever possible. New additions off the late summer menu that are sure to please include Red Hot Peanut Pork Candy, roasted pork belly, Virginia peanuts and hot honey; Chicken Fried Quail, served on a waffle with sawmill gravy, maple syrup and fried sage; Papa Weaver’s Pork Chop with corn pudding, collards and a Coca-Cola barbeque glaze, as well as the Pecan Crusted Pan Fried Trout with roasted vanilla sweet potatoes.

Originally from Northern California, Frantz fondly remembers growing up running around her father’s butcher shop, and grilling every night in the summer. Realizing her first career choice - graphic design - was more of a hobby, Frantz pursued culinary studies at Le Cordon Bleu in Scottsdale, Arizona. Earning her Associates Degree in 2008, she is proud of having graduated in the top five percent of her class, being on the President’s List and a member of the Escoffier Society. Interning at Dish Market & Bistro in Scottsdale while studying, Frantz was soon helping to manage their kitchen as sous chef. She attributes her natural creativity and work ethic to her father, as he inspired Frantz to succeed in the culinary world. His Tennessee roots resulted in some great Southern dishes around the table quite often, influences she plans to incorporate into her menus at The Majestic Cafe.

Frantz moved to Washington, DC in 2008, to assist in opening Founding Farmer’s flagship restaurant, where she was quickly promoted to sous chef, working for Executive Chef Graham Duncan, now corporate executive chef for Alexandria Restaurant Partners (ARP). During their tenure together at Founding Farmer’s, the restaurant reached national acclaim and was named in 2009, as one of “America’s Top 50 Restaurants” by Travel + Leisure and among the “100 Best Restaurants,” by Washingtonian. Then in 2012, Frantz was appointed executive chef at Farmers Fishers Bakers, Farmers Restaurant Group’s next project at the Georgetown Waterfront. Most recently, she served as executive chef at Brickside Food & Drink in Bethesda, Maryland, from 2013 to July 2015.

Although Frantz has traveled the world investing in cooking classes, which then translates to incorporating interesting ingredients into her dishes from her adventures, she notes, “I still always come back to my roots: good, from scratch cooking, made with fresh seasonal ingredients.”

ARP’s Corporate Executive Chef Graham Duncan is pleased to be reunited in the kitchen with Lisa Frantz. “Bringing Lisa to take over the top spot at The Majestic Cafe is a huge win for us. Based on working with Lisa in the past, I know she is one of the strongest scratch cooking chefs around. She is passionate about taking a farm fresh approach and supporting local food traditions. The Majestic Cafe is in good hands with her leading the kitchen; we can expect great things to come.”

The Majestic Cafe is located at 911 King Street in Alexandria, Virginia. The restaurant is open for lunch Monday through Friday, from 11:30 AM to 5 PM, and dinner Sunday through Thursday, from 5 PM to 10 PM, Friday and Saturday, from 5 PM to 11 PM. Brunch is served Saturdays and Sundays, from 11:30 AM to 5 PM. The restaurant is located eight blocks from the King Street-Old Town Metro Station, accessible on the Yellow and Blue lines. For reservations please call (703) 837-9117 or visit www.majesticcafe.net.

Restaurants in the ARP collection include The Majestic Cafe and Virtue Feed & Grain in Old Town, Alexandria, Virginia; Dantanna’s Surf, Turf & Turf and Dantanna’s Downtown in Atlanta, Georgia; Dantanna’s Tavern in Sandy Spring, Georgia; CafĂ© Tu Tu Tango in Orlando, Florida. Upcoming concepts include Lena’s Wood-Fired Pizza & Tap, which will open at Yates Corner in the Rosemount area of Alexandria, Virginia in October 2015 and Palette 22, which will open in the Village of Shirlington in Arlington, Virginia in December 2015.