Dan Barber will tackle race and gender inequalities in the kitchen in 2021 with his new guest chef program.
Michelin-starred Dan Barber announced that Blue Hill restaurants at Stone Barns in Pocantico Hills, NY and Greenwich Village will not reopen in their current format next year and the name of the restaurants will not be Blue Hill. Chef Dan Barber said in a letter to staff late Sunday that he and his partners in restaurants plan to set up a cooking program at Blue Hill at Stone Barns. They expect to announce the first chef in the program by early fall, with an opening projected for early next year. He said he would focus on the ‘chef-in-residency’ programme, moving away from the culinary duties he had been considering for several years, while the 2 Michelin-starred Stone Barns would continue with outdoor picnic meals until the end of the year.
According to the news in The New York Times, the famous chef, who has been thinking of implementing the guest chef program for a long time and said that the pandemic has accelerated the programme, stated in his letter that the aim of the program is to “support a diverse set of chefs’ voices that interpret the farm and the region through their own cuisines and experiences.” With the pandemic process highlighting the longstanding structural racism in restaurants, Chef Barber said in his letter, “There has been a reckoning in our industry, and we’ve heard and discussed many pointed, structural questions about the system that we uphold, especially about racial and gender inequities,” and continued, “Becoming truly conscious of how I’ve both benefited from and contributed to that system is a process that is long overdue. And I know that this recognition means little unless I actually put it to use through concrete actions. I’m learning about structural changes that we need to make in order to ensure that at the heart of all of our future work we build a community and a culture that are supportive, equitable and diverse.”