The following statement can be attributed to Azmin Ghahreman, Executive Chef & CEO of Sapphire Culinary Group:
Last month made 13 years of culinary excellence at Sapphire Laguna, where my team and I have made countless memories and created a special bond with so many beautiful people of the Laguna Beach community and each of our guests.
As many of you may have already heard, I have made the difficult decision to transition ownership of Sapphire Laguna Restaurant and Pantry into the capable hands of restaurateur Russ Bendel. As owner of Vine Restaurant in San Clemente, Ironwood in Laguna Hills, and Olea in Newport Beach, Russ is a respected restaurant industry veteran, and someone I know will build on the tradition of Sapphire Laguna Restaurant and Pantry.
He will make minor enhancements and rename the restaurant
Sapphire, Cellar. Craft. Cook.
I will be passing the torch to Russ next week, when I will focus all of my attention on Sapphire Culinary Group, including my Sapphire at School, Sapphire Catering, and Sapphire at Work programs, and some exciting new projects I look forward to sharing with the public.
Please come see us for a meal this week so I may thank all of our loyal guests for helping Sapphire Laguna thrive for 13 years now, and I encourage all to enjoy Sapphire, Cellar. Craft. Cook. when Russ and his colleagues reopen in early April.
This restaurant — and all of you — will always hold a very special place in my heart.
— Azmin Ghahreman, Executive Chef & CEO of Sapphire Culinary Group