Owner/ Executive Chef
David Bouley was born and raised near Storrs, Connecticut. Life on his grandparents’ farm made a lasting impact on David. Inspired by their French heritage, he developed an appreciation for cooking healthful meals using carefully prepared fresh ingredients.
David worked in restaurants from an early age, spending time in Cape Cod, Sante Fe, and eventually France and Switzerland. After studying at the Sorbonne, he had the opportunity to work with some of Europe’s most acclaimed chefs, including Roger Vergé, Paul Bocuse, Joel Robuchon, Gaston Lenôtre, and Frédy Giradet. Having gained that experience, David returned to work in some of New York’s leading restaurants of the time, such as Le Cirque, Le Périgord, and La Côte Basque. He also spent time working as sous chef in a San Francisco restaurant opened by Roger Vergé.
From there, David became chef of Montrachet restaurant when it opened in TriBeCa in 1985. The restaurant quickly drew attention and earned a three-star review in The New York Times.
The Original Bouley : 1987
In 1987 David opened his own restaurant, Bouley, in TriBeCa. Bouley quickly became known as the most notable dining experience in New York and set a new standard for fine dining in America. Among many accolades, Bouley earned a four-star review in The New York Times and received The James Beard Foundation awards for Best Restaurant and Best Chef. From 1991 through its close in 1996, Bouley received the number one ranking in both food and popularity in the Zagat Survey of New York City Restaurants. Bouley has the distinction of being the first restaurant in the Zagat Guide to achieve a food rating of 29 (out of a possible 30). Upon closing Bouley restaurant in 1996, David sought to realize his culinary vision of bringing high quality products to an expanded audience. The first step was the opening of Bouley Bakery.
Full HISTORY COMING COON!
BOULEY BAKERY AND MARKET, BOULEY FLAGSHIP RESTAURANT : 2008
With space opening up in the Mohawk Building in November 2008, the Flagship Restaurant moved to its current location at Duane and Hudson Streets, opposite Bouley’s first namesake restaurant of 1987.
The Bouley Bakery and Market shifted to the former restaurant space and quickly became a community hot spot offering over 500 freshly prepared items to enjoy at home or in the café. Serving bread, pastries, and other baked goods, as well as meat fish and over 50 hot items created on premises, the bakery catered to over 5,000 guests daily. With the reopening of Bouley restaurant, David moved to focus on his creative signature cooking style and less on retail.
The scent of fresh apples that greets diners open entering Bouley calls to mind the original restaurant, but it is clear that time, travel and experience have only enhanced the skills of a master. At Bouley, Chef David continues to transport diners to new and exciting culinary heights.
BOULEY CHEF’S PASS & BRUSHSTROKE LAUNCH: 2011
The Chef’s Pass, a private dining room seating 8-12 opened in November 2011. Allowing David to demonstrate firsthand how he assembles his dishes, the Chef’s Pass also gives him the opportunity to introduce his guests via Skype to purveyors and artisanal masters who inspire him.
Brushstroke, in collaboration with Tsuji Culinary Institute, opened in April of 2011. Awarded a Michelin Star in its first year and listed in GQ’s list of the ten best restaurants in America, the restaurant continues the Bouley tradition of sharing, education, and creating dishes for better health.
BOULEY BOTANICAL OPENS. THE CHEF & THE DOCTOR SERIES IS CREATED: 2013
Launched in 2013, The Chef & The Doctor series is a collaborative lecture and dinner series hosted by Chef Bouley and world renowned doctors and nutritionists. Alternative, preventive and functional medicine are at the core of each presentation. Nutrient dense dishes complement each lecture. Many of the doctors or deans of medical schools that have collaborated in the series, often present their own personal health challenges of which they have healed through whole foods.
Through their presentations, the gastroenterologists, cardiologists, neurologists, and nutritionists allow guests the ability to follow proven and successful blueprints to change their lives by leading with better whole food choices and applications. Lecturing doctors work with Chef Bouley to share and educate him on food choices that have accomplished positive results and success and specific medical practices. The series is ongoing and has drawn attention from the Wall Street Journal, celebrating NY Times Best Seller authors like Dr. Andrew Weil, Dr. Mark Hyman and Dr. David Perlmutter.
In 2015, Chef David Bouley received the honorary title of “Japanese Cuisine Goodwill Ambassador,” a government award from the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries for exemplifying the spirit of “Washoku,” meaning “harmony of food” in Japanese. At that time, he was the first non-Japanese recipient of this award. Chef Bouley has intensively studied the health benefits of Japanese cuisine and culture and has tremendous success infusing Japanese cuisine in French technique. That same year, Bouley Restaurant was awarded the “Best Restaurant in the United States” from tripadvisor Traveler’s Choice Awards and placed #14 in the world.
NEXT: BOULEY New Direction 2017 – Present
In 2017, Chef Bouley received an honorary degree of Doctor of Humane Letters, “honoris causa” from the College of Agriculture, Health and Natural Resources at the University of Connecticut for his sustained and important accomplishments across his career and leadership in advancing the science and art of gastronomy as a vehicle for optimal health. He also won a lifetime achievement award from Dr. Peter Green, Director of the Celiac Disease Center at Columbia University and a lifetime achievement award from Dr. Barry Smith, President of the Rogosin Institute and Professor of Clinical Surgery at Weill Cornell Medical College.
Bouley Test Kitchen and Bouley at Home Open at 31 West 21st Street
Bouley at Home and Bouley Test Kitchen are open and will be further enhanced for your next exciting celebration!
Chef Bouley will engage in a deep study of the relationship between health and food during this period, taking Nutrition classes in Japan, the United States and Europe. He will travel to Japan, Peru, Cuba and Switzerland to consult with renowned experts and learn further about the science of nature and the healing science of whole foods.
Bouley Restaurant, which was located at 163 Duane Street, will relocate to Harrison Street in 2020.
While we look forward to a future focus on health and nutrient density at our next location.
How will his efforts reach beyond his diners at Bouley?
Recently, Chef Bouley took one class within the Harvard Executive MBA program as a visitor and found it compelling. He believes that in this environment he will find solutions as a Chef to reinvent the business machine that is our national food system. He is already working towards this via his longstanding partnership with Wegmans Food Stores directly with owner Danny Wegman. He is proud to be associated with Danny Wegman and his talented team, who are already striving to make this ideal come to life.
What is the vision for the new Bouley Restaurant once it reopens?
Whereas the current Bouley accommodates around 120 guests, our new Bouley will be just 20 or so seats! The new Bouley will tailor guests’ menus to their specific needs and will be designed to optimize the healing power of food. He will create a healthier formula of eating.
It will not be a “health clinic”, but rather a restaurant of high standards, romantic and sensual in every detail. Supreme culinary excellence through ingredients and techniques will be the focus. The true value will lie in educating the diner in terms of why and what we chose to offer that evening, and how they can employ our choices into their lifestyle outside the restaurant through small of gifts of our healthy Building Blocks. As well, his connections within the health industry will contribute to their personal health benefits.
What other exciting new concepts can we expect?
We are delighted to announce Bouley at Home, a concept designed in collaboration with Bulthaup kitchen design. The comfort and familiarity of “kitchen counters” serve as the dining space. There will be wine corresponding to various Bulthaup counters, to offer the guest corresponding food pairings. You will be able to learn how to execute Chef Bouley’s “building blocks” while enjoying the powers of food matched to its wine.
There are hands-on cooking classes with Chefs and Doctors, and cooking classes with professional Chefs. This gives our audience the confidence to see professional cooks using “domestic kitchens”. Simple execution and the power of the Living Pantry will be the focus, as well as the topic of his highly-anticipated forthcoming cookbook!