Via A Life of Food, we learned of a shake-up in the kitchen at Linda Derschang’s Smith. Here is an excerpt from ALF:
I can reveal that last night, November 28, 2009, was Eliot Guthrie’s last night as chef at Smith. This is heartbreaking news, but I trust owner Linda Derschang has another good chef lined up.
The post goes on to note that Smith’s manager Keara Matthiesen has also been
let go. Update: When originally published, we described the exit of Matthiesen and Guthrie incorrectly. Linda Derschang contacted CHS to let us know the employees were not let go. She told Seattle Met it was their ‘own decision to leave.’
We have asked Derschang and Guthrie for comment.
While not an exact parallel, the episode brings to mind the last Derschang-related shift in a Capitol Hill kitchen. In April, CHS documented the break-up of the partnership Derschang had formed to create Oddfellows with Ericka Burke. Burke, one of the duo behind Volunteer Park Cafe, left as head of the Oddfellows kitchen in a split both she and Derschang described as ‘amicable.’ “Neither one of us knew that what we were planning was too much,” Derschang said in April. “It’s a blessing that Oddfellows is so busy but it was a little more than anyone expected.” Burke continues to help run Volunteer Park Cafe while Oddfellows has continued to draw crowds and has been mostly free of the early criticism of its food.
Guthrie’s work at Smith, on the other hand, has been mostly praised. We’ll keep checking with Derschang and Guthrie to find out what brought about the change.