Tag Archives: Paul Arenstam

Josh Thomsen gathers talent for Claremont wine fest

Josh Thomsen
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Josh Thomsen knew from a young age that he wanted to be a chef and credits his late father, Jerry, for sparking his culinary interest. His dad would put in a long day as a stockbroker, come home, go to the market, and then cook up a storm — making a mess, using every pot in the house, and turning out a delicious dinner.

The Culinary Institute of America grad has done his dad proud. Thomsen’s resumé includes stints at the French Laundry in Yountville, Hotel Bel Air in Los Angeles, and The Lodge at Pebble Beach. He’s also worked in kitchens in big-buck Las Vegas venues like Tao Restaurant at the Venetian Resort, the Mansion at the MGM Grand Hotel, and the Michael Mina-owned Nobhill Tavern.

These days Thomsen, 40, is the executive chef at local landmark The Claremont Hotel, Club, and Spa, known for its regal white facade and killer views. Until recently, though, the hotel wasn’t exactly known as a destination dining experience. … Continue reading »

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Berkeley Bites: Paul Arenstam and Charlene Reis, Summer Kitchen & Bake Shop

desserts
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Chef owners Paul Arenstam and Charlene Reis have a slow food sensibility in a take-out business better known for fast food. That’s because the culinary couple (partners in life too) come with stellar cooking credentials: She’s an-ex Chez Panisse pastry chef, he did stints at upscale L.A. joints before landing at San Francisco’s acclaimed Rubicon. A decade ago Arenstam opened his own restaurant, Belon, in the city.

But running a high-end brasserie in the Tenderloin proved untenable; when business faltered, … Continue reading »

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