Fresh from celebrating its fifth anniversary, Mamie Taylor’s recently announced the arrival of new Head Chef Jonas Hamre and General Manager Zachary Lavoie.
At the vanguard of the Vancouver’s reinvigorated Chinatown culinary scene, Mamie Taylor’s is a modern American restaurant specializing in imaginative, regional comfort food with a killer cocktail list. Recently, Mamie’s welcomes Chef Jonas Hamre who previously ended an award-winning four-year stint as the Executive Chef of the UBC Alma Mater Society, where he oversaw nine outlets on campus. Perhaps more importantly, Jonas is a Mamie’s regular, who sat at the bar two-to-three times a month during those four years.
A certified WSET Level 3 sommelier as well as a chef, Jonas built his career in several Vancouver-area kitchens, such as Calabash Bistro and Memphis Blues BBQ House. He also spent a summer touring the Southern United States BBQ circuit, perfecting his grilling technique. He then moved on to Calgary, where he opened his award-winning JAROblue restaurant in 2007.
“I’m excited to be joining the team at Mamie Taylor’s and to have the opportunity to go back to my roots of cooking in a smaller restaurant for people who enjoy food,” he says.
Over the course of the next few months, Jonas will be revisiting the menu, all while keeping close to Mamie Taylor’s regional North American comfort food roots. He will also focus on incorporating ingredients from local suppliers to make everything in-house, be it baking, smoking, butchering or pickling.
New additions such as Lamb Chili Fries with Smoked Cheddar “Cheese Whiz”, Chicken Cobbler with Gravy and Herb Biscuit Top, and Glazed Pork Loin Ham with Scalloped Potatoes, Garlic Brocolini and Grainy Mustard Jus have already become guest favourites.
“When it comes to my vision for Mamie’s, I want to make fun food that people recognize and that makes them feel good inside,” he says.
When he’s not in the kitchen, Jonas is outdoors, mountain biking, snowboarding, hiking and camping — cooking on fire in the backcountry being one of his favourite things. A Whitecaps supporter, he tries to make it to every home game.
Mamie’s new General Manager, Zack grew up in Whistler and got his start in the industry at 14 working for Umberto Menghi’s Il Caminetto. In Vancouver, he moved from the floor to behind the wood, tending bar at both The Keefer and The Diamond and taking theird place in the 2016 Grey Goose Pour Masters. Recently returned from Australia, where he created the opening spirits
programme at the award-winning Sum Yung Guys in Sunshine Beach, Queensland, Zack has already put his adventurous stamp on the Mamie Taylor’s cocktail menu.
Alongside established classics, he’s created several concoctions such as the Wild Thing (Giffard Wild Strawberry, Campari, Noilly Prat Rouge and fresh lemon), Jessie’s Girl (a Pimm’s Cup martini garnished with Salted Cucumber Foam), and What’s your sign? (an after-dinner sipper made with Mount Gay XO, Apricot Brandy, Averna, and fresh lime).
“My plan is to keep the flavours and experience people have come to love at Mamie Taylor’s and to add a fun and playful twist,” he says. When not running the floor or shaking things up behind the bar, Zack spends 90 percent of his downtime in the mountains on either bike, skiing or hiking adventures.