Last week, news broke that the Momofuku Empire's sommelier Christina Turley had left the restaurant group to work on her family's vineyard in California. Cocktail man Don Lee left his full time job with the group six months ago—he still has his hands in on a consulting basis. And now comes word that Cory Lane, the front of the house man at all Momofukus but lately at Ma Peche is decamping for California as well. Both Lane and Momofuku's David Chang tell Eater that the split is amicable and has been in the works for a long time. Says Chang, "It's a bummer but he's been trying to get his master sommelier certificate and I think he realized he didn't just want to be a service guy. He wants to be a wine guy. And for him to do that he needs to learn more."
Meanwhile, Noodle Bar chef de cuisine Kevin Pemoulie is leaving for New Jersey at the end of September and will be handing the reins over to sous chefs Ty Hatfield and Sean Heller.
As far as the rest of the empire goes, Chang says the Williamsburg commissary is finally done, so all Milk Bar baking will take place there from now on. He says he's content right now to focus on midtown and Milk Bar and isn't planning on opening another restaurant in 2010. (But who knows what will come in 2011.)
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