Chef and co-owner Grant van Gameren leaves the Black Hoof (UPDATED)
About an hour ago on Twitter, news broke that the Black Hoof’s founding chef and co-owner, Grant van Gameren, was no longer involved with the restaurant:
Its been AMAZING feeding all you over the years!BUT, I am no longer affiliated with the Black Hoof. Please follow me @grantvangameren PLS RT
No news yet on the reasons behind the move or on van Gameren’s future plans, although a follow-up tweet confirms that he’s leaving “in an amicable split.” We’re also curious about what this means for Black Hoof and Company, the fine-dining restaurant that van Gameren and co-owner Jen Agg were to launch next spring.
UPDATE: Agg spoke to The Dish this afternoon to clarify that the breakup between the two owners was perfectly amicable. “This is something we’ve been talking about for a long time,” she said of the split over the direction of the business. “The story is that it is no story.” Agg confirmed that she is now the sole owner. She noted that diners should not expect any great changes at the Black Hoof, not least because chef Brandon Olsen has been running the kitchen already for months (apparently about half of the menu consists of his creations) while van Gameren took on a more executive role in the company. Plans for the Black Hoof and Company have been put on ice and the Black Hoof Cocktail Bar, which opened earlier this month, will continue on in its current location.
11 thoughts on “Chef and co-owner Grant van Gameren leaves the Black Hoof (UPDATED)”
Does this mean that Toronto Life will have to find a new restaurant to a whore to?
It is a shame that Grant is leaving the Hoof. I’m sure that the split is amicable, and I’m sure it has to be. But lets get serious. How can someone really work with an egotistical partner for such a long period of time without there blood boiling? Good Luck Grant. Won’t be long before Jenn sinks this adorable gem of an eatery into the ground.
Who Cares!? I have eaten there several times, and always walked away confused at there popularity. Grants food is ok, it’s cold cuts people. With a few hot meals thrown in.
Maybe toronto life will talk about something else now.
Grant’s way of combining ingredients always made the dish cohesive because each component played a role. His curiosity in various cooking methods made his menu unique and worthy of going back. His passion is obvious and the black hoof was always synonymous with Grant. It was one of very few restaurants in Toronto worth going back to–not only to try new and sometimes exotic things but to re-indulge in his tantalizing creations. Grant-I’m looking forward to what you have in store for Toronto!
I have to agree with SDV, Jenn Agg never treated myself or my friends well. She clearly is too much for herself. But I always went back because I respected their food and combined vision. I wish Grant continued success in whatever he does.
I ate at the Hoof once and vowed never to return, based entirely on how distasteful Jenn Agg is.
With Grant gone I can now take pleasure in watching the Hoof crash and burn.
typical pump and dump restaurant process in toronto , what a joke
sorry to hear of the split–together those guys created something truly great. during the many times i hung around and imbibed at the bar, I loved watching the gang in action. brooding handsome grant head down creating and pro mother hen jen running the show. but unlike others I’m curious about the next phase of the Hoof. change can be good.
When Jenn Agg was involved in Cobalt back in the day, friends and I used to go to get a nice martini and as an alternate to sneaky dee’s nacho nights. My friend once accidentally left some gold bangles next to the washroom sink right before closing and phoned first thing the next morning to ask if they had been found. No one was left in the bar that night except the owners. The bangles were never ‘found’… we always thought she swiped ’em and never went back. who knows? but bleh, she was never nice to us when we ordered either.
My first visit to the Black Hoof I vowed would be my last. Jenn Agg was so rude and arrogant. Someone who knew her made an excuse that she’d had a bad day – but don’t we all?? I sure don’t go around taking it out on other people. I especially don’t bite the hand that feeds me. I wish Grant the best of luck in his next endeavour.
So many haters – wow! I realize that taste and food preferences are extremely subjective, so it’s not surprising that some people just don’t like it.. but I’ve been a fan of the Hoof pretty much from the start. Three years later, it remains the restaurant where I ate the greatest ragu in my life (it was a Wild Boar Pappardelle). My quest for the perfect ragu continues, but for now, the Hoof holds the belt.
Jenn has always treated me and my friends or guests well.. and I didn’t know her before. I spoke with Grant about food and sourcing a couple times, he was very genuine but remains a bit of an enigma. Both are clearly committed to their work, and have done a great job. So I tip my hat, and look forward to visiting the Hoof again, and also to following Grant to his next venture.
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