We didn't see this one coming: Effective immediately, Jason Stratton is departing his highly regarded restaurants Spinasse, Artusi, and Vespolina. Stratton announced the move through his public relations team earlier today.
The announcement is particularly shocking considering Stratton was just announced as a James Beard Award semifinalist for Best Chef: Northwest for his work at Spinasse.
According to the press release, "Jason Stratton has decided to move on to explore new opportunities. Effective today, Stuart Lane, who has served as Chef de Cuisine in the kitchens at Spinasse and Artusi for the past two years, will assume the lead culinary role for those restaurants. Jason will assist the staff in the transition for the next few weeks."
"I’m honored to be taking the helm at Spinasse," says Lane. "I think the sum of my culinary experiences with top chefs like Jason Stratton and Holly , cooking in Italy, and my enthusiasm for authentic Piemontese cuisine will provide the links needed to seamlessly continue and expand on Jason’s great work. Mostly we’ll keep doing what we always do with high standards for style and quality and keeping our guests and employees happy. Ultimately, I would like to add more charcuterie and continue to build on our farm products and artisan relationships. It would be terrific to have producers raise eggs and make butter just for us."
Here's what the prolific tweeter said today on Twitter: