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Stephan Richter of 'Top Chef' to Open LA Restaurant
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From Lisa  Jennings of Nation's Restaurant News ( “Top Chef” contestant Stefan Richter on Thursday confirmed long-standing rumors of his plans to open his first restaurant in the Los Angeles area.

The charismatic participant in the Bravo network cooking show series, Richter said he is planning to take over the Santa Monica, Calif., restaurant L.A. Farm, beginning Aug. 6, sharing ownership with film producer Alex Winitsky, who opened the restaurant in 1989.

The name of the restaurant will change to Stefan’s at L.A. Farm, officials said.

Richter said he plans to bring a “cosmopolitan classiness” to the Santa Monica dining scene with a menu that will feature light California cuisine at lunch and tapas at dinner. The bar will feature a range of beverages, from indulgent cocktails to Milwaukee’s Best and Pabst Blue Ribbon, officials said.

Trained in Germany and holder of a certified master chef diploma, Richter said he has served as chef in hotels around the world, including the Villagio Inn & Spa in Napa, Calif., and the Bellagio Hotel, Resort & Spa in Las Vegas. Currently, Richter owns Stefan F. Richter’s European Catering in Los Angeles, which will become the catering arm for Stefan’s at L.A. Farm.

Working with Richter at the restaurant will be Leandro Bongarra as chef de cuisine and Rick Martinez as general manager.

“I am eager and excited for the location of my first restaurant to be in Los Angeles,” said Richter. “I am inspired by the liveliness of the space, California’s abundance of fresh ingredients and the westside location. NRN.COM

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