The Restaurateur, a documentary film by Roger Sherman chronicling the creation of two of Danny Meyer’s New York restaurants, has won in the Best Documentary-Food category at the 2010 Sonoma International Film Festival. Ironically, most of the film had been shot 11 to 12 years ago and sat on the shelf until last year.
In the film we see a younger-looking Danny Meyer and Meyer’s Gramercy Tavern chef Tom Colicchio (with hair) talking about their hopes and dreams for Eleven Madison Park, for which construction is just getting underway. The film traces the birthing of both that restaurant and Tabla during an 11-month period, when both were being built in the late ’90s. The film also profiles Floyd Cardoz, the chef at Tabla.
The documentary was originally planned as the first in a series about the coming of age of food in America (as Sherman puts it). The series never quite got off the ground and Sherman’s film remained on the shelf for 11 years.
In 2009, Sherman decided it was time to resurrect the project and he completed the 1-hour film, which includes new interview footage with Meyer.
The Restaurateur had a premiere advance screening in New York City last month, which included a Q&A afterwards with both the filmmaker and Danny Meyer.
The film is listed as “Coming Soon” on the Florentine Film/Sherman Pictures website.
Meyer can currently be seen in a series of in-depth interviews as part of the Leaders with Guts series on Food ChannelPRO.