Star chef takes over Saint-Germain

Dyker Heights native Vincent Tropepe is an award-winning chefand published author who has prepared meals for luminaries likeHillary Clinton and Yogi Berra. At age 28, he is ready to tacklehis next challenge: Taking over the reins at French bistroSaint-Germain on 83rd Street and Third Avenue.

On September 26, the restaurant celebrated its grand openingunder Tropepe’s direction. Saint-Germain’s owner and executive chefsays he had a personal stake in the bistro.

I ate here as a patron and I didn’t want someone to buy theplace and make it something it isn’t, Tropepe said.

He describes his vision for the menu — food that is simple butsimply delicious. If the event’s cuisine is any indication, theflourishes of fine dining will not be missed. The crispy porkcutlet sandwich with spicy cherry peppers possessed a daring zipthat was well paired with the succulent pork.

There’s nothing fancy about that, Tropepe said of thesandwich. But it’s so good that it doesn’t matter.

Tropepe also served up a ham, bacon and brie sandwich that had acreamy zest and a lemon chicken sandwich with portabella mushrooms,onions and tomato. The chilled chocolate cannoli was a terrifictreat.

Guests at the grand opening included Sopranos actor LouMartini, Assistant Director of Public Events and Special Projectsfor Borough President Marty Markowitz Eileen Mullaney-Newman andState Senator Marty Golden, who is pleased to welcome Tropepe backto the neighborhood.

This is going to be one of those exciting restaurants that youwill be writing about for years to come, Golden said.

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