Hall of Fame Award recipient 2010 - Steve Logan
Steve Logan has over 30 years experience in the hospitality industry. He began this career, (after gaining a Diploma in Hotel & Catering Administration in 1981), working in hotels and restaurants in England, USA, Sweden and New Zealand in roles ranging from waiter to sous chef to manager.
Back in New Zealand he worked for Independent Taverns as Assistant, then General Manager, and then established and operated two successful Wellington restaurants, Brer Fox Café, in 1988 and Café Laffite, a 60 seat Creole Restaurant in 1990. Brer Fox in Thorndon, was a risk, opening just one year after the stock market crash, with just 30 seats, when large pubs and taverns were reigning; & with Cajun cuisine.
"Owning that restaurant was the hugest buzz of my life," he says. "I remember we served our first lunch customers, about 20 people. After the service, I opened up the till and there was a cheque in there for $30. I just stood there looking at it thinking, 'Someone has trusted what I'm putting on their plate and paid me for it.' I just stood there, staring at the cheque and counting through all the money again."
In 1996 he opened his iconic 80 seat Wellington restaurant, Logan Brown with business partner Al Brown and the two continue to run the restaurant today. To most Wellingtonians, Logan Brown needs no introduction. It has been described as a temple for worshippers of wine and food, an international flagship of New Zealand cuisine.
Fresh ingredients, cooked innovatively, maximising flavour, texture and visual appeal, form the basis of the Logan Brown experience.
Steve works closely with the front-of-house team, to ensure a highly professional, warm style of service and to impart his knowledge and enthusiasm for food and wine matching, supported by an extensive wine list of more than 230 wines to choose from.
A strong focus on developing systems and a high level of organisation help to maintain excellence and consistency in the restaurant and has been a vital ingredient to therestaurant‘s success. Since the start of 2009, the pair have also worked to reduce the hospitality industry's carbon footprint, starting with Logan Brown.
Over its 14 years of operation the restaurant has received numerous accolades. Most recently, in 2009 the restaurant was the supreme winner of the Cuisine Magazine Restaurant of the Year and to cap off a triumphant year, the two business partners were named Wellingtonians of the Year.
New Zealanders have also watched the pair trade the comfort of the restaurant for life on the road in the television series Hunger for the Wild. The series takes us around the country all in the pursuit of food excellence and is a showcase of New Zealand‘s finest and freshest foods. It won the Qantas media award in 2009 for best lifestyle programme.
Logan was also part of the think-tank which developed the successful Wellington On A Plate food festival, incorporating food tours and beer and wine tastings as well as dinner deals at the capital's finest restaurants.
Earlier in 2010 his passion and commitment to the hospitality industry earned him an honorary bachelor of hospitality management degree from WelTec.
Deservedly honoured as the 2010 Hall of Fame recipient, Steve Logan, is a restaurateur at the top of his game.