Boris Portnoy began his training in the kitchen at Deux Cheminees in Philadelphia with Chef Fritz Blanc, cooking traditional, textbook French cuisine. Following his two and a half years with Chef Blanc, he opened Restaurant Salt with Vernon Morales, who was named a Philadelphia Rising Star by StarChefs in 2004. Through Morales, Portnoy was introduced to hyper-modern cooking techniques.
After working together for a year, Morales encouraged Portnoy to spend time in Spain, to further his understanding of the avant-guard techniques and philosophies behind the countryâ€™s alta cocina. Portnoy worked at Restaurant Mugaritz with renowned chef Andoni Anduliz outside of San Sebastian, Spain, where he learned more about the application of modern technique and, more importantly, the range of taste.
Upon his return to the States, Portnoy moved to New York to be the opening pastry chef at Cru, the critically acclaimed modern European restaurant led by chef Shea Gallante (name a New York Rising Star in 2005). When the opportunity presented itself to reunite with Chef Morales in San Francisco, Portnoy jumped at the chance. At Winterland Restaurant, the two chefs share their deep commitment and passion for cooking highly creative food that consistently tests boundaries and questions conventional cooking methods.