New Orleans’ Le Pavillon Hotel Appoints Derek McKenna as Executive Chef
Glamorous and grand, the reimagined Le Pavillon Hotel proudly announces a new signature restaurant, Bijoux, and lobby bar, Cachette 1907 while welcoming Derek McKenna as executive chef.
Under the leadership of award-winning Chef McKenna, Bijoux, centered around a majestic, Czechoslovakian chandelier, presents French cuisine with a New Orleans twist at breakfast and lunch, as well as an a la carte brunch on the weekends, while dinner is served in Cachette 1907.
Coining its name from the French word Cachette, which means hideout, and 1907 as the year that the hotel originally opened its doors, Cachette 1907 was once a hidden respite for cocktails and gatherings among NOLA leaders during prohibition and was accessed by a secret passage to keep names unsullied. Keeping its speakeasy charm, the vintage Brunswick mahogany bar offers hand-crafted, specialty cocktails as well as local New Orleans beers while surrounded by a railing from the Grand Hotel in Paris.
On his move to New Orleans, Chef McKenna said, "I love cooking with fresh ingredients, and the shellfish and seafood available year-round here in New Orleans is among the best." Known for his strong butchery skills and contemporary sauce work, Chef McKenna looks forward to combining the noted New Orleans creole influence with French cuisine and is excited to challenge his creativity. "I believe in staying true to the area's cultural food and am excited to provide guests with new, unexpected pairings and tastes."
A seasoned chef focused on seafood with a fresh, Southern fare, McKenna began his career in Florida at various beach resorts and golf clubs, including LPGA International and Plaza Resort & Spa in Daytona Beach, Fla., and most recently as sous chef at the award-winning Azurea Restaurant located in One Ocean Resort & Spa in Atlantic Beach, Fla.
As executive chef, McKenna will oversee Le Pavillon Hotel's signature restaurant, Bijoux and Cachette 1907 while overseeing the hotel's in-room dining, banquets and catering events ranging in size from small meeting to weddings of more than 200 people.
"We are thrilled to have Chef McKenna lead our culinary team at Le Pavillon Hotel. His expertise in this position combined with his high-energy demeanor is a welcome addition here," said Parker Sams, general manager at Le Pavillon Hotel. "We're excited for guests to experience his culinary creativity."
Already embraced by the New Orleans community, Le Pavillon Hotel won first place in the United Way of Southeast Louisiana's 2019 Got Gumbo Competition, naming newly-concepted Bijoux as the Best Gumbo in Louisiana with Executive Chef Derek McKenna's winning recipe.
Rich in tradition, Le Pavillon Hotel serves an infamous peanut butter and jelly sandwich late night snack in the lobby from 10-11 p.m. An evening ritual stemming from a weary businessman's cravings, the nightly treats are served with hot chocolate and cold milk.
On the corner of Baronne and Poydras Street in the Central Business District of New Orleans, just blocks away from the French Quarter, Le Pavillon Hotel is listed on the National Register of Historic Places and is recognized as a AAA Four Diamond rated hotel.