Vergennes Laundry Welcomes New Chef

Christian+Kruse
Christian Kruse

Christian Kruse

vermontbiz.com

vermontbiz.com

Christian Kruse

By ALLY MURPHY

VERGENNES — On Oct. 31, Christian Kruse became the new owner of local eatery Vergennes Laundry. Back in 2010, previous owners Didier and Julianne Murat created a French-inspired bakery out of the original laundromat that had a home at 257 Main Street in Vergennes. This year, Didier and Julianne are moving on from their restaurant, creating an opportunity for acclaimed chef Christian Kruse.

After attending the New England Culinary Institute, Chef Kruse completed two internships at Basin Harbor, a resort in Vergennes. He has since worked in Seattle and Salt Lake City and for the last 13 years he was back at Basin Harbor, totaling over 15 years in the industry. In 2012, the Beach family, who own the resort, offered him the opportunity to be their next executive chef, and he was more recently promoted to food and beverage director/executive chef.

He was also invited to cook at the James Beard House on January 2016 in New York City and was awarded Chef of the Year for 2016 by the Vermont Chamber of Commerce. Just recently, Kruse won the Culinary Cup hosted by the Cancer Patient Support Foundation at the University of Vermont’s Davis Center.

Now, he will take his talents to the popular Vergennes eatery. Vergennes Laundry is known for its pastries, coffee and seasonal dinners that use fresh, local ingredients.

“I had seen that they were for sale on a website and had reached out to them. I had been in talks with them for the past year but nothing serious until Basin Harbor and [I] mutually decided that it was time for me to open my own place,” Kruse said. “With the years of experience and confidence, it was an easy decision at this point in my career. I didn’t want to look back five years from now and regret not pursuing my dream.”

Vergennes Laundry will see some changes, though Kruse will keep a few local favorites on the menu. He plans to keep “some of the coffee, pastries and breads.”

“I will be train[ing] for the next two weeks with them and hopefully getting a good sense of what I will be offering my guests,” Kruse said. “My expertise and passion is for fine dining, so I will be expanding on that in the restaurant. I will be introducing fine food in a welcoming and casual vibe without sacrificing quality and creativity.”

Kruse will definitely bring some additional options to customers, including the “Chef’s Table” dining experience, a classic brunch and wine-paired dinners. Vergennes Laundry closed its doors temporarily on Oct. 31. After a few weeks of transition and some minor renovations, they are planning a soft opening the week of Nov. 27 and will officially open on Dec. 6.

In terms of his goals for the restaurant as a whole, Kruse said, “First and foremost, serving [a high-]quality product that my guests can say as they walk out of my restaurant/bakery … was one of their best meals, is my first goal. Providing an amazing work environment for my employees is another. And lastly, to share my love, drive and passion for cooking and showcasing my creativity with the wonderful produce and meats that Addison County has to offer. I have had the honor to helm the position as food and beverage director of a resort but now am ready to carry that under my own name. I am truly excited about my future and can’t wait to share it with the rest of the world.”

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Vergennes Laundry Welcomes New Chef