Eric Ripert: Stephen Starr Is ‘the King of Restaurants’

Eric Ripert
Eric Ripert Photo: Getty Images

New York chef Eric Ripert popped into town this week to check up on 10 Arts, the restaurant he opened at the Ritz-Carlton, and he tells us that when he’s got some downtime in Philly, more often than not, he finds himself in one of Stephen Starr’s restaurants. And that’s not just because there’s one on practically every corner. “I think Stephen is the king of restaurants,” Ripert told Grub Street. “I am always amazed by how great the concepts are created, kept, and delivered with such consistency, service-wise and food-wise.”

Ripert added that many places he’s visited around the world that are more expensive and wield more cachet than the Philly-based restaurateur’s can’t match the precision and panache that Starr’s restaurants persistently put forth.

“He’s very good at creating a team around him that supports his vision,” Ripert added.

So which is his favorite? Ripert is known to frequent Morimoto and Starr’s Parisian bistro Parc while in town, but he’s become a recent convert to, of all things, the monkey bread served at comfort-forward Jones.

“When I went to Jones, that monkey bread was out of this world,” Ripert said. “It’s not just good, it’s amazing! I had never had it before, and I ate the whole thing.”

Eric Ripert: Stephen Starr Is ‘the King of Restaurants’