Larry Finn, Merchants Exchange Productions

Saturday, November 11, 2017, 10:30 am - 11:15 am

Stop by the CUESA Classroom for a cooking demo featuring the seasonal bounty of the Ferry Plaza Farmers Market.

Larry Finn is the Director of Culinary Services for Clinton Reilly’s Merchants Exchange Productions in San Francisco.  He is responsible for the menus at Credo Restaurant, The Julia Morgan Ballroom, and Merchants Exchange Club, as well as Credo’s catering menus. Larry’s love for local ingredients is seen by his use of the bounty of ingredients from local farmers, ranchers and fishers.

Most recently, Larry was the executive chef of Scala’s Bistro, at Kimpton’s historic Sir Francis Drake Hotel in San Francisco and was responsible for the menus at Scala’s Bistro, as well as the banquet and in-room menus for the Sir Francis Drake Hotel.

Larry started out his career at Union Square Café as the kitchen manager.  It was there he first got his taste of seasonal farmer’s markets, and working closely with farmers and artisans.

From there, Larry had the chance to go to San Francisco.  He spent four years at Campton Place, the last two years as sous chef to Todd Humphries, a Gray Kunz protégé.  Larry loved his time in San Francisco, and loved working with all of the local farmers and purveyors.  He was able to work with some of the best ingredients he had ever seen and go foraging with friends. He only left San Francisco to return to the East Coast, to work for Gray Kunz at Café Gray.

Larry was the executive chef at Café Gray, working under his now mentor, chef Gray Kunz.  It was there Larry’s love for Eastern European influences grew, and he received a prestigious two star review from the New York Times and a Michelin Star.

After four years at Café Gray, Larry returned to Union Square Hospitality Group and was the executive chef for all of the Union Square Hospitality Group Citi Field food outlets.  He spent a short time working as the chef de cuisine at the Four Seasons Restaurant in New York City.  It was after that position that Larry came into contact with Chef Masaharu Morimoto and became the chef de cuisine at Morimoto New York. 

Larry grew up in Central New Jersey, where he started cooking for the family when he was just a kid.  His first job was a busser at a local country club, and after awhile, he was asked to help out in the kitchen.  Larry decided against a traditional culinary education, and opted instead for the Bachelor of Science program at Johnson and Wales, so that not only could he learn the skills in the kitchen, but so that he could learn the management and finance side of the business too. 

In his free time, Larry spends time with his wife and two kids, and enjoys being in his own home kitchen.  

All demos take place in the CUESA Classroom (under the white tents in front of the Ferry Building) and are free to the public, with recipes and samples for all.