Wente Names New Chef
Matt Greco brings NYC foodie cred to Livermore.
Wente has announed that Matt Greco will take over as new executive chef for its award-winning restaurant. Greco brings a resume packed with Big Apple cooking experience. The Culinary Institute of America-grad spent four years at lauded NYC chef Daniel Boulud's Cafe Boulud in Manhattan's Upper East Side before helping start the French-influenced Cafe Grey, and finally opening his own Southern/barbecue restaurant Char No. 4. A Houston-native, Greco designed the kitchen and menu for the Brooklyn restaurant where he was able to delve into his passion for barbecue and housemade charcuterie.
Greco replaces Eric Berg, who parted ways with Wente at the beginning of the summer, and will officially take over on October 1 according to Wente CEO Carolyn Wente.
"I'm very excited about Matt Greco coming on. I feel like he totally gets where we are and where we want to go, and that he'll really push the food quality even further," Wente told me. "He has worked with a number of really great chefs in New York, and I believe that Matt’s going to bring a leadership role to the kitchen in terms of mentoring our existing staff and taking them to a new level."
Wente said the restaurant is toying with the idea of bringing back its program of using grass-fed beef from cows raised on the Wente estate, and that Greco's cooking experience and familiarity with meat from Char No. 4 could be a good match for that. Other than that, expect smaller tweaks to the menu versus any dramatic changes.
"I think there will be subtle changes—it won’t be like we've gone from a taco bar to Asian cuisine—it won’t be a dramatic flip like that," Wente says. "But I think some of Matt’s playfulness and some of his background will certainly add a different dimension to the food than we’ve had in the past."