What is in this article?:
- Jonathon Sawyer named 2013 MenuMasters Innovator
- Branching out
Sawyer's Greenhouse Tavern is the first restaurant in Ohio to be certified as green by the Green Restaurant Association.
Jonathon Sawyer is the 2013 MenuMasters Innovator.
Jonathon Sawyer, whose creativity in the kitchen and environmental pioneering have helped put Cleveland on the culinary map, has been named the MenuMasters Innovator for 2013.
The MenuMasters Awards are produced by Nation’s Restaurant News and sponsored by Ventura Foods. They honor outstanding menu development plus excellence in foodservice research and development, and the winners are selected by the editorial board of Nation’s Restaurant News.
“We are excited to be recognizingJonathon Sawyer as the 2013 MenuMasters Innovator Award honoree,” NRN publisher Randall Friedman said. “Sawyer is truly a trailblazer in culinary innovation and never rests on his latest success.
“From his award-winning flagship restaurant The Greenhouse Tavern, to his home cellar where he ferments wine, beer and malt vinegars for use in his restaurants, to his pop-up restaurants and his latest new restaurant concepts such as Noodlecat and Sawyers Street Frites, Sawyer defines menu innovation in America.”
Sawyer’s career began at The Biltmore Hotel in Miami before he moved to New York and worked first under the tutelage of chef-restaurateur Charlie Palmer at Kitchen 22 and then under fellow Clevelander Michael Symon at Parea.
Returning to Cleveland in 2007, he worked as the chef at a Roman enoteca, Bar Cento, while preparing to open his own restaurant, The Greenhouse Tavern, a French-inspired farm-to-table restaurant based on the philosophy that “the proximity of the farm and soil to a restaurant correlates directly to the quality of its food,” according to the restaurant’s web site.
The Greenhouse Tavern is the first restaurant in Ohio to be certified as green by the Green Restaurant Association. Sawyer opened it in the historic Cort Building, in part because it’s more environmentally responsible to repurpose an old building than to build a new one. Most of the restaurant was made using previously used objects, such as the cedar wood in the main dining room that came from a barn that stood during the Civil War, and oak tables, counters and cabinets that once were furniture in area high schools and colleges.