David Bazirgan has worked restaurants since he was 15, starting with a job as a dishwasher in Newburyport, Massachusetts. He worked at most of the popular eateries in his hometown before enrolling at the Cambridge School of Culinary Arts.
Bazirgan’s first serious cooking job was with Chef Barbara Lynch at Galleria Italiana. He later moved onto a line cook position at Chef Todd English’s acclaimed Olives, where he learned the importance of speed and multiple flavor combinations. A short stint cooking pan-Asian food at Stan Frankenthaler’s Salamander helped round out his experiences.
In 1998, Bazirgan reunited with Lynch as opening sous chef at her much-anticipated No. 9 Park. After one year he was promoted to chef de cuisine, and went on to launch and perfect the seven- to nine-course seasonal tasting menus that became a hallmark of the restaurant.
After five successful years at No.9 Park, it was time for Bazirgan to move on and move west. In fall 2003, he tried his hand at the upscale restaurant Elisabeth Daniel at Jackson Square but was then drawn to an opportunity to work with Restaurateur Jocelyn Bulow at Baraka, where he won a 2005 StarChefs.com Rising Stars Award. Bazirgan also teamed up with Bulow at La Suite and Chez Papa, where he earned three stars from the San Francisco Chronicle. Bazirgan left Chez Papa in late 2010 to become the executive chef at Fifth Floor in the Palomar Hotel, where he spotlights an ingredient-driven American menu.