Rising Star Chef Eric Hara of Pier 9 - Biography

New York, NY

November 2011

Los Angeles native and 2007 New York Rising Star Chef Eric Hara credits Emeril Lagasse with helping to unearth his own culinary talents. He watched Emeril’s cooking show regularly and imitated his techniques in his own family kitchen; once he realized the products of his cooking experiments were actually quite palatable, he wasted no time jump-starting his career as a chef, heading straight to culinary school at Santa Barbara City College’s School of Culinary Arts without any previous restaurant experience. After graduating, Hara’s first job was alongside Chef Michel Richard at Citronelle. Hara also worked under John Downey at Downey’s and Camille Schwartz at Restaurant Mimosa, then at the Ritz-Carlton Laguna Niguel and at the Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise in Canada.

In 2004, at the age of 26, Hara arrived in New York and took the executive chef position at the two-star restaurant Chez Josephine. He later joined David Burke as chef de cuisine at davidburke & donatella, where his dishes were clean-flavored, ingredient-focused, and very much his own, while still in line with the experimentation and playfulness that David Burke is known for. Hara is currently the chef at New York's Pier 9 and 9 Restaurant.