Former Starr Restaurants executive Martin Heierling has been named to the newly created position of chief culinary officer for SBE, the hospitality company said Tuesday.
Heierling will lead SBE and subsidiary company Disruptive Restaurant Group’s culinary strategy across 112 venues, including the 26-unit Umami Burger chain and the Katsuya, Cleo, The Bazaar and Fi’lia concepts.
Joining first as a consultant through the end of the year, Heierling will officially assume the role in January 2018, the company said. He will guide the existing portfolio and create new concepts, Sam Nazarian, SBE founder and CEO, said in a statement.
“We are thrilled that Martin is joining us in this newly created role. His unrivalled experience will help nurture our collaborative partnerships with world-class concept chefs, including José Andrés, Danny Elmaleh, Jose Icardi, Michael Schwartz and Katsuya Uechi,” Nazarian said.
Heierling previously served as culinary director for Philadelphia-based Starr Restaurants, where he helped grow the company from 24 to 32 concepts in three years. He also managed the rapid growth of the Starr Restaurants Catering Group division.
The creation of the chief culinary officer position comes after Daniel del Olmo was named CEO of Disruptive Restaurant Group in September. The Los Angeles-based group is the recently relaunched restaurant arm of SBE, which is parent to the SLS, Morgan and The Redbury hotel brands.
“I am thrilled to join this exceptional tribe at this stage,” Heierling said in a statement. “SBE and Disruptive Restaurant Group’s brands create world-class experiences, and I am excited to lead the continued culinary innovation with the teams and develop new concepts during this exciting period of growth.”
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