Chef Arakawa attended St Louis School in Honolulu before moving to Northern Arizona University where he graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Health Education. It was during this time that Arakawa’s passion and curiosity for food developed, and which later drove him to attend the Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts in Portland.
In Chef Arakawa’s 15 years of hospitality experience he has held positions such as Head Chef for the 18,000 acre luxury Crazy Mountain Ranch in Montana, Executive Chef for the Grand Union Hotel (also in Montana), and at the famed Tree Room Restaurant at Sundance Resort.
Chef Arakawa returned to Hawaii in 2007 where he was the Banquet Chef at the Grand Wailea Resort on Maui. He was responsible for managing events of up to 2000 people, from weddings to high-profile corporate functions, each with personalized menus and often incorporating many different cuisines. Chef Arakawa was also responsible for overseeing multiple dining outlets at the resort including the Bistro Molokini and the private cabana dining experience.
The opportunity to come to Mauna Lani Bay and work with the best and freshest locally grown ingredients is what Chef Arakawa says is one of the best things about returning home to Hawaii. He acknowledges great traditions such as roasting Kalua Pig and that being in the center of the Pacific Ocean, you can’t get fish any better than Hawaii. Working closely with the farmers and ranchers of Hawaii Island is at the forefront of his culinary creations.
Chef Arakawa’s cooking style is simple and unique, creating a harmonious balance of textures and flavors on the plate. His famous signature dish is “Small Kine Jerk Monchong”, where he utilizes Hawaiian Chile Pepper, which he says is not as fiery as the Jamaican Jerk, with a mango relish and coconut bubbles.
When he’s not thinking up new dishes, Chef Arakawa enjoys spending time with his wife Megan and their three children, Breana, TJ and Kailee, taking them fishing and exploring the natural beauty of Hawaii Island.For more information visit www.maunalani.com
In their early twenties, Bruce and Eric Bromberg each attended Le Cordon Bleu in Paris, graduating with the highest honors with Eric holding the distinction of being the first American to teach classes at the prestigious school. In the late 80s and early 90s, Eric followed cooking school with apprenticeships at top restaurants in France, including Le Recamier in Paris. He then cooked at Raoul's and Jonathan Waxman's JAMS in New York City, the American Hotel in Sag Harbor, and Nick and Eddie in Manhattan. Bruce also worked at the American Hotel before attending Le Cordon Bleu, and then apprenticed in Paris at Le Recamier, Bistro du Louvre and the Michelin two-star Duquesnoy. He learned the art of bread baking at Boulangerie Poilâne in Paris and haute cuisine at Michelin three-star restaurant Pierre Gagnaire in Saint-Etienne.
In 1992, the brothers created the first Blue Ribbon in Manhattan's SoHo neighborhood. The original Blue Ribbon restaurant ushered in a new era in dining, one with no reservations and an eclectic mix of familiar and fine foods dressed up or down.
From 1992 to 2011, Blue Ribbon Restaurants have been recognized with a slew of "Top 10" and "Best Of" awards from publications including Wine Spectator, Zagat, Time Out New York, The New York Press, New York magazine and The New York Observer and many more. The original Blue Ribbon received Gourmet magazine's prestigious America's Top Table title in 1996, and was Food & Wine magazine's pick for Chef's Choice Best Dining in 2003. The Blue Ribbon burger was also selected as one of Martha Stewart's top nine favorite NYC burgers on her television show MARTHA in 2009. Eric and Bruce were James Beard Award Restaurateur of the year Semi-Finalists in 2010, and James Beard Award Restaurateur of the year Finalists in 2011.
Bruce and Eric Bromberg released their first cookbook, The Blue Ribbon Cookbook, Better Home Cooking in April 2010 to rave reviews. The book is a finalist for The International Association of Culinary Professionals (IACP) 2011 Cookbook Awards, the prestigious honor considered the gold standard for culinary publishing. In it they share culinary secrets and wisdom learned serving and entertaining their clientele of culinary luminaries and neighborhood regulars. Most of the recipes are dishes from their restaurants that the Brombergs have carefully honed over the last 20 years.