Welcome to EAT THIS CITY, your tour of the best restaurants in one of our favorite cities, as chosen by a world-class chef, celebrity, or local hero.
Get out your best duds (ladies, festive hats are mandatory) because we are going to the home of the Kentucky Derby, and we aren’t leaving until you have a bourbon buzz. Our guide for the week is David Danielson, who’s been the head chef of Churchill Downs (where the Derby is held) since 2011. Classically trained in France at the Duma Pere school and the Ecole Hotelier Tain l’ Hermitage, Danielson has a background in 4-star Chicago hotels — like the Ritz-Carlton and Four Seasons. But, he also served as the personal chef to the British Consulate General.
Over the course of his career, Danielson found a niche in events. As the chef at Rockefeller Center in New York City, he fed guests at the PGA and US Open. During this time, he began using his fine dining mindset as a foundation and learning how to build upon it for large groups. He has perfected the approach and now specializes in the authentic flavors of the South while remaining progressive and inventive. He’s inspired by contemporary culinary trends, global cuisines, and seasonal, farm-fresh ingredients. He works to surprise race fans with meals that acknowledge the past, but point very strongly to the future of cuisine.
Check out these amazing plates; the man is working magic.
Hungry? Great! Now we’re off to see Chef Danielson’s favorite food experiences in Louisville!