Renowned L.A-based chef-restaurateurs Tony Esnault and Yassmin Sarmadi
will bring French concept to luxury center’s Penthouse in 2019
South Coast Plaza is pleased to announce that Knife Pleat, a new French restaurant by chef Tony Esnault and restaurateur Yassmin Sarmadi, will open in early 2019. A power couple in Southern California’s culinary scene, Esnault and Sarmadi are highly regarded for Spring and Church & State, sought-after downtown Los Angeles restaurants that have earned stellar reviews from top critics. Both French restaurants have consistently placed in Pulitzer Prize-winning critic Jonathan Gold’s annual “101 Best Restaurants” for the Los Angeles Times.
Esnault, regarded as one of Southern California’s best French chefs, grew up in the Loire Valley and attended culinary school in Lyon. Esnault’s resume includes stints at numerous Michelin-starred restaurants across Europe, including Carré des Feuillants in Paris, Auberge de L’Ill in Alsace, and at the legendary Louis XV restaurant in Monte Carlo, where he met his mentor, Alain Ducasse. The two chefs reunited in New York City at the Essex House and Adour at the St. Regis. Esnault’s work with Ducasse earned the restaurants a combined five Michelin stars and three stars from The New York Times. Sarmadi, a passionate foodie since childhood, opened Church & State in 2008, the French bistro that established her as a pioneer of the burgeoning downtown L.A. culinary scene.
The couple envisions Knife Pleat as “elegant yet approachable,” designed to complement the contemporary style of South Coast Plaza while incorporating elements of tradition. The cuisine of Knife Pleat will reflect Esnault’s modern interpretation of classic French techniques, drawing from his 25 years of fine dining experience in Europe, New York, San Francisco and Los Angeles.
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