Jason Campbell, the talented chef who made Luke's Kitchen + Bar one of the best dining destinations in the city, is leaving the Maitland mainstay after three and a half years for an opportunity with Team Market Group.
Campbell's last day of service will be Jan. 21, so you have a week to pop in to say so long while sinking your teeth into those crispy octopus lettuce wraps, or blackened fish collar, or Florida strawberries and honey served over Olde Hearth sourdough bread blobbed with sunflower seed butter and whipped farmers cheese. (Tip: snag a seat at the kitchen counter and you'll be treated to a few freebies.)
BTW: His Key West spiny lobster, jerk-rubbed with Florida datil peppers then fire-grilled over Florida white oak before being glossed in a citrus beurre monté, was easily one of the best things I ate in 2022
Key West spiny lobster
Campbell will assume executive chef duties at TMG's Primrose Lanes Restaurant & Bowling Club
, slated to open in four months.
The 40-year-old chef, and Le Cordon Bleu grad, honed his skills at some notable restaurants — sous chef at The Ravenous Pig, chef de cuisine at the original Cask & Larder, chef de cuisine at Metropole inside the 21c Museum Hotel in Cincinnati and executive chef of Mary Eddy's Dining Room in Oklahoma City — and will be a value addition to TMG.
"We are delighted to have Jason joining TMG as executive chef of Primrose Lanes," says TMG co-founder Romi Mawardi. "This is one of our largest projects, and we know Jason will prepare signature dishes given his extensive experience. As an Orlando native, Jason fits in with our vision of transforming Orlando and creating unique, memorable experiences."
The rapidly burgeoning hospitality group are behind some of the best bars in town — Mather's Social Gathering, The Robinson Room and Ann Teagues's, to name a few — and recently got into the restaurant game revivifying the menu at the Wellborn
, then opening plant-based burger joint Plantees
followed by Sonoran-style taqueria Taco Kat
, all under the care of Nick Grecco.
Following the (re)opening of Primrose Lanes, TMG will focus energies on Eastwood, a live-fire restaurant in Mills 50
that Grecco will also oversee.
Team Market Group
Primrose Lanes Restaurant & Bowling Club
"I can say my time at Luke's has been amazing, with some of the best moments in my career. From my first day to my last week, it's become a completely different restaurant. I truly hope I inspired and taught my team something that they can carry with them," Campbell says. "I love this industry and I'm excited to continue to grow and learn in my future role."
A successor to Campbell hasn't been appointed as yet, but an announcement will be made next week according to Luke's chef-partner Brandon McGlamery.
Primrose Lanes will serve elevated, chef-curated renditions of old bowling diner food — "we're looking to use high-quality ingredients to create seasonal, local and elevated classics with a Florida coastal feel and TMG flair," says Campbell. "This won't be your typical lanes fare."
Knowing Campbell, it certainly won't.
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