Geoffrey Slate, co-owner and chef at Icon Restaurant, has resigned his duties in the kitchen to pursue other opportunities, according to a letter I received last week from Alan Dobbs, co-owner and managing partner.
Dobbs says while he is disappointed to lose Slate's expertise in the kitchen, former Chef de Cuisine Ben Leingang has stepped into his place. "I couldn't be more excited about the direction he's taking us," Dobbs says. "Ben has an incredible synergy with the rest of the kitchen and is, in my opinion, nothing short of a creative genius. His strengths include Vietnamese and Filipino cuisine, which will keep us true to our Asian-inspired roots – yet his dishes will also reflect elements of French and Italian, among many others. Which is to say, our menu is going to be more dynamic than ever before – and it’s going to change often."
Slate was named one of the city's best chefs and Icon was honored as one of the city's best new restaurants in the Birmingham Weekly 2007 "Menu of Menus" recently. He and Dobbs are longtime friends and previously co-owned Restaurant G before opening Icon in the Tutwiler Hotel early this year.
(Photo by Chris "Mojo" Denbow, who shoots a lot of local events; go to www.photomojo.info.)