Larry Lavine – Founder of Chili’s and Turtle Creek Restaurant Group
Larry Lavine brings decades of experience in the restaurant branding market to the Turtle Creek Restaurant Group. In 1975 he opened his first Chili’s restaurant in Dallas, which soon grew to become a chain under Brinker International. With a motto of “Make money and have fun,” Levine uses his years of building successful restaurants in concept development of other ventures, including menu development, corporate vision, kitchen design, and restaurant consulting.
Philippe Schmit is an executive chef and was recently named “Master Chef of France,” the most prestigious award in French cuisine. Philippe cooks in Houston, Texas where he most recently created the acclaimed Philippe Restaurant + Lounge (which was recognized by Texas Monthly as one of Texas’ “Best New Restaurants”) and bistro moderne at Hotel Derek (where he was hailed as one of the city’s most innovative and talented chefs following his arrival in 2004). He raised in Roanne, France, Philippe first apprenticed at age 14 at a local restaurant in the picturesque French town northwest of Lyon and then trained at three of Paris’s most respected Michelin 2-Star restaurants: Le Carre des Feuillants, Pavillon Elysee Lenotre and Restaurant Jacques Cagna. His first US position was as a coveted sous chef at the internationally respected Le Bernardin and later joined Park Bistro as chef de cuisine. In 1994, he became executive chef of La Goulue. And in 2000, Schmit opened Orsay as executive chef, taking the New York restaurant scene by storm.