Top Chef Alum Finds Home on Beach Drive

Jeffrey Jew is a chef imbued with unrelenting ambition. His culinary accolades include working for Gordon Ramsay at the Connaught Hotel in London and, while living in Washington DC, served as the Head Chef for the Embassy of Italy and as the Chef de Cuisine for Marvin restaurant and Blackbyrd. That experience brought Jeffrey into the national culinary conversation when he competed on Top Chef in 2011. After competing, Chef Jew relocated to St. Pete with his partner, an executive with C1 Bank.

Today, the partners of BellaBrava announced the appointment of Jeffrey Jew as the Executive Chef for their new Beach Drive tavern concept. His initial focus will be developing a menu that actualizes the owners' shared vision for a tavern that incorporates a modern approach to American bar fare.

In the kitchen, Chef Jew conducts rhapsodies as smooth and indelible as Bach's cello suites. "During a private demo, Jeffrey simply knocked our socks off," said owner Robert Sanderson. "His skills, enthusiasm and work ethic make it abundantly clear that he was exactly the talent we've been looking for." Chef Jew's talent doesn't come as a surprise, after living in Italy and France where he taught culinary arts for Abbey Road Programs, he enrolled at The Culinary Institute of America graduating top of his class in 2007.

"There's no doubt that these are exciting times for St. Petersburg," said Jew. "I am honored that the team behind one of the city's most successful restaurants have given me this opportunity."

The new 4,000-square-foot structure will be located at 224 Beach Drive NE, currently occupied by Bruce Watters Jewelers, which will move to a new storefront.  

Check out Chef Jeff's Top Spices for your Kitchen, or read more about his experience on Top Chef here.

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Written by Brian Bailey

Brian Bailey is the founder of I Love the Burg and That's So Tampa. In addition to regular contributions to each blog, he's been featured as a commentator to Bay New 9, The Tampa Tribune, The Tampa Bay Times, The Tampa Bay Business Journal and The Business Observer as well as national outlets including The Huffington Post and The Wall Street Journal.