With a career spanning nearly 40 years, Pat Kuleto has revolutionized the field of design and established himself as one of the world's most visionary restauranteurs. Innovative and oft imitated, Pat's name exploded onto the scene in 1985 with the creation of San Francisco's beloved Fog City Diner (his 110th design) and almost single handedly established restaurant design as a specially in its own right. Since then, Pat has helped craft over 170 restaurants including Atlanta's Buckhead Diner, Chicago's Papagus, and San Francisco' Boulevard.
Pat Kuleto has established himself as a leading restauranteur through his pioneering collaborations with some of the country's most acclaimed chefs, including Nancy Oakes, Mark Franz, Todd Humphries, and Traci Des Jardins. Blessed with an all-encompassing sense of design that goes beyond the details directly to the essence of a project, Pat's breathtaking restaurant creations have consistently transformed the Bay Area's world-class culinary landscape, seamlessly blending the most inspired elements of food, wine, and design.
Over the years, Pat Kuleto's name has become synonymous with excellence. A leader in the hospitality field, in 1999 Pat won Bon Appetit's Food and Entertaining Award for Best Designer and was honored the following year by Time magazine as one o the "Top 100 Innovators" in its 2000 Millennium issue. For the man who claims he was born with a building permit, not a birth certificate, the expectations for every new project run high. The driving force and culinary entrepreneur behind several of the Bay Area's most revered dining destinations, some of Pat's most cherished creations include:
Pat opened Boulevard in San Francisco with acclaimed chef Nancy Oakes. With its intimate Belle Epoque aesthetic and Oakes' inspired cuisine, Boulevard has become a classical destination, raising the already high bar in a city famed for its restaurants.
Continuing to co-create some of the Bay Area's most beloved and visually captivating restaurants, Pat and Chef Mark Franz, of Stars restaurant fame, opened Farallon near San Francisco's Union Square. Drawing on their mutual love of the ocean, Pat designed a whimsical and seductive undersea fantasy to match Franz' inspired "Coastal Cuisine."
In the same year he opened Farallon, Pat collaborated with chef Traci De Jardins, known for her work at Rubicon, to open Jardiniere. Housed in a landmark building in San Francisco's Civic Center neighborhood, Jardiniere showcases sophisticated, award-winning French-California cuisine served in a celebratory Kuleto-designed environment that is dramatic and sexy, yet warm and inviting.
Kuleto Estate Family Winery
With the founding of Kuleto Estate Family Winery over a decade ago, Pat created the perfect union of his love for food and wine. A devoted winemaker for 25 years, and a champion of the life well lived, Pat established Kuleto Estate on a 761-acre property located in the mountains that form the Hennessey Basin overlooking the Napa Valley. Marrying the eye of a master designer and the heart of a vintner, Pat has sculpted a world-class winery and an idyllic Tuscan-style home among the surrounding ranch and vineyards. With an acclaimed portfolio of robust mountain-grown wines including opulent Cabernet Sauvignon, Zinfandel, Syrah, Pinot Noir, Sangiovese and Chardonnay, Pat's sumptuous and structured wines pair effortlessly with good food and great company.
Together with former Campton Place chef Todd Humphries, Pat opened Martini House in St. Helena, inviting both locals and visitors to enjoy a quintessential Napa Valley food and wine experience. With a world-class 700-bottle wine list that complements a menu based on the best-best-loved foods of the wine country, the highlights of Martini House include hand built fireplaces, an open staircase that descends into the wine cellar, and outdoor garden seating around an 80-year-old fountain.
In 2000, Pat Kuleto and partner Mark Franz purchased Nick's Cove on scenic Tomales Bay. A labor of love, this special project restored the historic 100-year-old Nick's Cove restaurant and its bay side cottages with all the care and attention to detail for which Pat is famous. Originally debuting in 2007, Nick's Cove has emerged as one of the most cherished destinations on the California coast.
After a seven-year, San Francisco-wide search for his next restaurant venue, Pat found just what he was looking for in Rincon Park, an incredible site offering breathtaking waterfront locations for not one, but two restaurants. Working with beloved Bay Area chefs Jan Birnbaum and Mark Franz, Pat created two stunning venues which opened in 2008 – Epic Steak and Waterbar, which offers a playful land and sea culinary yin and yang for the Embarcadero properties. Tied together by a European style piazza for outdoor dining, these inspired restaurants have been highly successful since their original debuts.
Reflecting on the current scope of his passions and talents, Kuleto observes, "As a restaurateur, vintner and gardener, I've grown from the medium of design to embrace the wonderful world of food and wine. In that milieu, I do what I love, and I create environments that excite me. I don't believe people fall in love with formulas, they fall in love with inspiration and originality. Savoring a perfect meal should be more than a little like falling in love."