By Spencer Feingold
Celebrity chef Michael Schulson says experience is now the most important part of dining ー even more so than the food.
“Millennials all want an experience, everything has to be experiential,” Schulson told Cheddar on Wednesday. “Food just isn't good enough anymore.”
Known for being on the forefront of restauranteering, Schulson is an award-winning chef and owner in Philadelphia. He studied at the Culinary Institute of America and worked at major restaurants, such as New York’s Peacock Alley at the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel and Buddakan. Schulson also trained in Japan and worked at multiple Tokyo restaurants.
In 2008, he opened his first restaurant, Izakaya, a modern Japanese pub in Atlantic City. A year later, Schulson opened his second restaurant, Sampan, in Philadelphia’s midtown village neighborhood. He then founded the Schulson Collective, which includes over ten establishments.
Today, Schulson says experiential dining is of the utmost importance. Restaurants should focus on experience, service, and food ー in that order, he said.
Schulson is implementing his strategy in his latest restaurant, a steak boutique called Alpine Rose, which aims to offer diners a unique experience that differs from traditional steakhouses.
“Here we wanted to create something that was little more feminine, with beautiful chandeliers, pinks and light blues, and things like that,” Schulson said.
At just 40 seats, Alpine Rose will be much smaller than Schulson’s other restaurants, which include the 20,000 square-foot Independence Beer Garden near Philadelphia's historic liberty bell.
Alpine Rose is set to open in the spring of 2019 in the Rittenhouse neighborhood of Philadelphia.
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