Olamaie Wins Big

Austin culinary duo named among Food & Wine's Best New Chefs

Austin culinary duo named among Food & Wine's Best New Chefs

Olamaie Grae Nonas
Michael Fojtasek and Grae Nonas can be found on this year's Best New Chef list from Food & Wine magazine. Photo by Robert J. Lerma

Austin's hottest chefs keep raking in the titles. On Tuesday, Food & Wine magazine announced its Best New Chefs for 2015, including a local culinary duo. Chefs Michael Fojtasek and Grae Nonas of Olamaie join nine other chefs on the esteemed list. 

"The duo — who met while working at one of LA's hippest restaurants (Son of a Gun) — share a passion for classic Southern cooking, locavorism and innovation," says the magazine. "This magical combination results in dishes like whey-caramel-glazed sweet potatoes with popped sorghum and crudo with puffed black rice, benne seeds and pickled watermelon rind."

Food & Wine calls Olamaie's chilled North Carolina crab salad its signature dish and shares an insider tip about those much-loved, off-the-menu biscuits. "If we put them on the menu, we'd be doing nothing but making biscuits all day long," Fojtasek says.

To qualify for the prestigious honor, chefs have been in charge of kitchen operations for five years or less. Olamaie is the only Austin representative on this year's list. Fojtasek and Nonas join Paul Qui, who received the title last year

Look for Fojtasek and Nonas in the July issue of Food & Wine.