Joseph Voller, who took over the executive chef’s position at South Philadelphia Italian restaurants Le Virtu and Brigantessa last summer, has resigned, citing family obligations. (Basically, an unworkable commute to his home in the Princeton area.)
Owners Francis Cratil-Cretarola and Cathy Lee have hired Damon Menapace, now at Kensington Quarters, as his successor. Menapace will work alongside Voller during the transition.
Voller came onboard after the breakup between Cratil-Cretarola and Lee and longtime chef Joe Cicala. Cicala and his wife, Angela, now host cooking classes, Sunday night dinners, and culinary tours of Italy
Menapace’s departure won’t sting quite so badly for Kensington Quarters. He had been working more closely of late with owner Michael Pasquarello with his other restaurants (Bufad, Prohibition Taproom, and the expanding Cafe Lift).
Katie Maley, who has worked at KQ since its October 2014 opening, will continue to run the kitchen and step up when KQ opens its stall at Penn’s new food hall.
Also in chef’s world:
The Farmhouse in Cherry Hill now has the services of Bruce Santino, replacing opening chef David Murray. Santino lately had been supplying restaurants with foraged food items, such as boysenberries, wild raspberries, crab apples, and mushrooms like morels, chicken of the woods, and chanterelles.