About

Vaucluse is a stylish brasserie with a distinctive New York vibe. Altamarea Group welcomes you to experience its foray into French cuisine through impeccable food, provocative drinks, and an alluring, vibrant setting. Vaucluse is a celebration of the uniquely spirited Provençal joie de vivre.

 

Chef Michael White, joined by Marea’s Executive Chef Jared Gadbaw, has created a menu embracing a variation of traditional French culinary sensibilities fine-tuned to the urban palate. The Vaucluse menu features a balance of approachable, classic and innovative dishes as well as daily specials that draw inspiration from both the rich history of French cuisine.  The menu, which includes a raw bar, hors d’oeuvres, seasonal produce compositions, handmade pastas, expertly prepared meats and fish, dishes pour deux, and rotating daily specials, is complemented by a collection of breads baked in-house daily.

 

Vaucluse features a prominent bar at its core.  Its beverage program features an extensive French and American wine list along with a carefully curated cocktail program. Fashioned by Meyer Davis, the space beautifully integrates contemporary design elements with the natural grace emblematic of Provence.

Team

  • Although Michael White’s soulful, flavorful interpretations of Italian cuisine indicate otherwise, Michael is in fact a Midwesterner who spent his childhood in Beloit, Wisconsin.  By whim or intuition, White decided to enroll in Kendall Culinary Institute and then secured a position in Chicago’s Spiaggia.  He studied for seven years at the acclaimed San Domenico in Imola before returning to the United States.  In 2007, White partnered with Ahmass Fakahany to open Due Terre and Due Mari in New Jersey.  One year later, Fakahany and White officially formed the Altamarea Group to open Marea, which garnered three stars from The New York Times, and holds two Michelin stars.  From Marea, Fakahany and White extended their culinary vision and opened Michelin-starred Ai Fiori; Osteria Morini restaurants in Soho, New York; Bernardsville, New JerseyJ; and Washington, D.C.; Campagna and The Barn at the Bedford Post Inn; Vaucluse, their French brasserie on Park Avenue, New York; and Nicoletta Pizzerias.  Outside the United States, Altamarea has properties in London, Istanbul, and Hong Kong.

     

    Chef White has received the highest recognition in his career from Michelin, Relais & Chateaux, The New York Times, James Beard Foundation, Zagats and many other organizations.  White was also named of of the “40 Most Influential New Yorkers under 40” by Crains, New York.  He has also been requested to cook for several U.S. Presidents.

  • Rocky Cirino is a Managing Director at the Altamarea Group, with management responsibility for Ai Fiori, Marea, Ristorante Morini, Bedford Post Inn restaurants, and now Vaucluse. Prior to his expanded responsibilies in fine dining, Rocky initially served with Altamarea Group as the General Manager at Marea in charge of creating the special ambiance and excellent service that accompanies Chef White’s coastal Italian cuisine.

     

    Rocky learned hospitality management at Le Cordon Bleu. He commenced his career at the Four Seasons in Scottsdale, AZ, where he worked as a Room Service Manager and later transferred to open the Four Seasons in San Francisco. Thereafter, he first worked with Chef Gary Danko at his eponymous restaurant, Gary Danko. In 2004, Rocky moved to New York to work with Chef Daniel Boulud at his highly acclaimed restaurant, Daniel. After three years at Daniel, he moved on and up to become the Maitre’d at Cru. From there, Rocky was recruited by the Altamarea Group to join the opening team at Marea to create a dining experience that combines seamless service, superb cuisine, an award‐winning wine program. 

     

    Under Rocky’s direction and deep commitment to the highest standards of service, Marea achieved the 2010 James Beard Award for Best New Restaurant in the United States, as well as countless other accolades, including three stars from The New York Times, and two Michelin stars.

  • Lauren DeSteno was born and raised in Franklin Lakes, New Jersey.  Growing up in an Italian and Spanish family, she was exposed to the importance of food both in celebration of heritage and providing a base for social interactions.  Lauren became a fixture in her kitchen at eight years old and never looked back. At age sixteen, she completed her first paid private catering event.  Coming from a family so grounded in food culture and tradition, it is interesting to note that Lauren is the only one who made a career out of it. Lauren received her Bachelor’s degree in Finance and Spanish from Fairfield University in Connecticut.  During that time she spent a semester abroad in Seville, Spain immersing herself in Spanish language and culture.  After graduation, Lauren went back to Europe and traveled extensively before enrolling in the Culinary Institute of America at Hyde Park.


    Lauren’s formal culinary education led her to the highly-lauded kitchen of Eleven Madison Park where she worked as both a savory and pastry sous chef. After a short hiatus spent food styling and recipe testing, Lauren joined the Altamarea Group at Marea just three days after opening in May 2009. Lauren’s passion and incredible talent fueled her ascension at Marea from her start as chef de partie of Garde Manger to the role of Chef di Cucina.  Lauren is presently the Corporate Executive Chef of the Altamarea Group, where she works with the myriad properties, various special projects, and provides culinary support to Chef Michael White. 

  • Richard Anderson had a love for beverages. Even as a child, he was filling his mom's grocery cart with any new drink he could find. His love for wine came later, while working as a captain at Dickie Brennon's Palace Cafe in New Orleans, Louisiana. After evacuating the city in preparation for Hurricane Katrina, he decided it was time to make the move to New York City. There he began working at CRU as a captain & bartender. CRU, at the time, had one of the best wine programs in the country and was an amazing place for him to expand his knowledge of wine and service. In 2009 he joined the opening wine team of Marea, where he helped achieve the Wine Spectator Best Award of Excellence. 

     

    Richard then became the Wine Director at Ristorante Morini and today leads the Vaucluse beverage program.