Inside The French Laundry’s Swanky New Kitchen + Courtyard

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The French Laundry, Thomas Keller’s famed Napa restaurant, has unveiled a stunning new look that includes a new kitchen and renovated courtyard. Chef Keller collaborated with  design firm Snøhetta and architecture practice Envelope A+D to realize the project. Its been over two decades since The French Laundry was updated, so the makeover was well worth the effort.

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The new space is doubles the size of the existing landscape for guests and increased the working environment for Keller and his team. A new kitchen annex houses the butchery, produce breakdown, and 15,000 bottle wine collection. Before beginning the project, the designers spent time observing how Keller runs his kitchen. This allowed them to create a space that is optimized for efficiency. The 2,000 square-foot kitchen has skylights that flood the space with natural light. Keller designed a custom pass table where dishes are plated for perfect presentation and passed from chef to waitstaff.

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The restaurant’s new look has completely transformed the dining experience. When guests arrive they begin their culinary journey in a series of new garden spaces. On their walk to the dining room, guests are greeted by the glow of the kitchen. According to the French Laundry’s team, “these carefully sequenced moments for pause are intimate compositions of unique acoustic, color and tactile qualities, providing the visitor with a continuing sense of discovery as they move from space to space.”

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