Inside Iron Chef Geoffrey Zakarian's Restaurant
Iron Chef Geoffrey Zakarian gives a tour of his New York City restaurant The Lambs Club and prepares a signature dish.
Iron Chef Geoffrey Zakarian
When he's not judging Chopped or competing in Kitchen Stadium battles since winning The Next Iron Chef: Super Chefs, Chef Geoffrey Zakarian can be found in one of his restaurants. We visited him at The Lambs Club in New York City, which he opened in the fall of 2010.
A Piece of New York
Though the restaurant is new, it comes with a lot of history. The building on 44th Street that now houses Chef Zakarian's restaurant and The Chatwal Hotel was once a private clubhouse for the Lambs, a prestigious theater group. It opened in 1905.
Old Hollywood Haunt
The restaurant's dining room occupies what was once the Lambs' grill room. Chef Zakarian and his partners paid homage to the stage and screen with pictures of icons from Humphrey Bogart to Woody Allen lining the walls.
Dine by the Fire
The handsome fireplace is "our gift from Stanford White," says Chef Zakarian, referring to the famous architect who designed the original building in 1905.
Upstairs on the mezzanine level, a gorgeous, clubby bar awaits.
The Lambs Club is adjacent to The Chatwal Hotel. "I was asked to come here by Sant Chatwal, who bought the building and gutted and renovated it," Chef Zakarian explains. He jumped at the opportunity: "I love doing old projects."
Mise en Place
Between breakfast and lunch service — The Lambs Club serves three meals a day, plus room service for the hotel — Chef Zakarian hops back into the kitchen to prepare a simple menu favorite for his own lunch. Always a perfectionist, he sets out meticulous ingredients for steak tartare.
Chef Zakarian uses filet mignon, cut into 1/4 inch cubes. He tosses it together with fresh white pepper, crisp capers, a little bit of caper sauce, pickled chanterelles, chives and fresh parsley, and takes a taste. "Not bad."
"How many have we made of these, like 7,000?" Chef Zakarian asks his sous chef. "This is a lunch dish that's very successful for us. This is what people want to eat. Tartare is protein — there's very little fat in here. And lunch food has to be quick." He garnishes the tartare with some celery leaves and fried shallots.
An Iron Chef's Lunch
"I have this for lunch probably twice a week. This is old New York, ramped up a bit with the pickled chanterelles and shallots and capers. It eats well, and it's very easy to eat."
The Next Iron Chef poses in front of a mural filled with Old Hollywood stars. He's earned his own right to stardom in Kitchen Stadium.