A Chicago bakery owner is suing an ex-chef for stealing recipes. When the employee left, she took two binders of recipes which the Fraîche Bakery is claiming are proprietary.
The chef allegedly told another employee that a lawsuit would be required to get the recipes back, and added that the owner should have made copies if she wanted to keep them, the Tribune reported.
Fraîche owner Susan Davis Friedman tells the Tribune the special recipes were developed over a three-and-a-half-year period and are the bakery’s property. Benson Friedman, the owner’s husband and attorney, added that the chef signed a non-disclosure agreement, the Tribune reported.
The lawsuit states the recipes “were developed, assembled tested and honed over the course of 3 ½ years. That work cannot be readily reproduced. The damage to Fraiche’s goodwill from the inability to offer these items would be irreparable because it cannot be measured in money damages.”
The cinnamon bomb was described by Restaurant Intelligence Agency blogger Matt Kirouac in in 2010, “If a doughnut and a muffin had a lovechild, it would be the Cinnamon Bomb from Fraiche bakery in Evanston”, and the pastry made Time Out Chicago’s list of the “100 best things we ate (and drank) in 2011.”
What do you think? Should the bakery owner win the lawsuit?
Here are a few more news notes:
The new chef at Meriwethers will be Paul Mitchell from Five Spice in Lake Oswego. As I recall, he was the original opening chef.
The Oregonian reports the ChefStable people have taken over Carafe restaurant.
ChefStable owner Kurt Huffman plans to put Troy Furuta, most recently sous chef at Clyde Common, in charge of reinvigorating the menu. Although Furuta has cooked for more than a decade in California and then Portland, he says he came away from his time at Clyde Common with new skills, including in whole animal butchery.
Carafe right now is definitely a traditional French bistro,” Furuta said. “I would like to keep some of the classic French bistro dishes but make sure it’s modern, contemporary.”
Rumor has it that all employees are being told they will have to reapply for their jobs. Sounds like someone must have had a bad service experience before ChefStable took over.
There is a new chef at Cafe Castagna. Jeff Emerson, last of the late and lamented Alba Osteria in Hillsdale, has taken over the reins. The café will be starting an early happy hour, Mon – Sat from 5 – 6pm.