Chef Samuel McCandless, formerly of Frasca Food and Wine, joined the Squeaky Bean team alongside chef Theo Adley. McCandless has cooked at Frasca since 2011 and was ready for a change. When the opportunity became available at the Squeaky Bean, he gladly accepted the new challenge. "I just wanted to try something new and seeing the kind of kitchen they have, I just knew I wanted to be there to cook," McCandless said. "I really love Italian food but there are limitations as a chef as far as ingredients go. I know that now, if I want to use soy or shiso or some other ingredient in a dish, I can - and that is exciting," he added.
Along with McCandless, the Squeaky Bean kitchen also gained former Frasca sous chef Sean Katebini-Stengel and Frasca alums Kathy Jeon and Stephanie Franz, who now serves as pastry chef.
The team at the Squeaky Bean changed dramatically in August when chef Max MacKissock announced he was leaving the LoDo restaurant. The shift happened at a time when bartenders Sean Kenyon and Nick Touch and maitre d' Stephen Gallic also departed. Following those changes, several of the major players in that kitchen, including chef de cuisine Blake Edmunds, sous chef Chris Schmidt, and pastry chef Matthew Thompson also left. Chef Theo Adley took over behind the stoves and bar manager Brian Smith came on board to run the bar program. Now Samuel McCandless joins as chef de cuisine.
A Montana native, McCandless started cooking when he was only 15. He was mentored by a chef at Enzo in Billings and, in 2002, came to Boulder. He began working at Q's Restaurant in the Hotel Boulderado quickly moving his way through each position in that kitchen. When Frasca opened in 2004, he jumped at the opportunity to work with chef Lachlan Mackinnon-Patterson.
McCandless moved to Scottsdale, Arizona after two years to open a new restaurant with former Frasca chef Brendan Sodikoff and later landed on the opening team of the famed L20 restaurant in Chicago with acclaimed and eccentric chef Laurent Gras. With Gras at its helm - and McCandless on the team- L2O earned 3 Michelin stars. In 2011, he rejoined the Frasca team and in early May this year, he replaced Jared Sippel as chef de cuisine at the Boulder restaurant. Last night was McCandless's first night on the line at the Squeaky Bean.
· Mass Exodus at the Bean: Max MacKissock Leaves the LoDo Restaurant [EDen]
· Squeaky Bean Bar Shake Up: Sean Kenyon and Nick Touch Out [EDen]
· Denver Chefs Recognized as James Beard Semi-Finalists [EDen]
· The Squeaky Bean Among Bon Appetit's 50 Best New Restaurants [EDen]
· Chef Theo Adley Will Take Over the Stoves at the Squeaky Bean [EDen]
· Samuel McCandless Takes Over as Chef de Cuisine at Frasca Food and Wine [EDen]