Chef Benoit Rablat
La Fresa Francesa Petit Café
Born and raised in France, Chef Benoit’s life growing up in Paris and Toulouse was surrounded by the best food and wine. “Raised by the spoon”, his mother and aunt taught him to cook from the moment he could stand on his own. For Ben, cooking was not a hobby or career goal, cooking is like breathing, or waking up and going to sleep.
As a child, Benoit grew up in the fresh markets in Paris with his mother and was curious about everything- the smells the colors, bread textures. His mother, obsessed with food, made cooking a daily activity in their day in their household. They also traveled the world exploring food culture the places they visited.
In his teens, Benoit moved to Toulouse with his aunt Coco, a dynamic cook. She instilled in him the art of braising and fundamentals of stock and sauces. From this point Benoit spent all of his time devouring cookbooks, and teaching himself about wine.
At 26 Benoit decided to move to the US to see what adventures life had in store. He landed in San Francisco, not speaking a word of English. He took a job as a bus boy in restaurant. Within 6 months he was speaking English fluently and had taken over the wine program at Cortez Restaurant. This is where his career in food started coming together.
Benoit moved to Los Angeles and opened his first casual cafe, which focused on crêpes and brunch driven fare. When that project ran its course, Benoit worked front of the house at Michelin star restaurant, Osteria Mozza. It was there that Benoit met Sandy, his culinary muse. The courtship was built on contraband Foie gras and visions of a life together sharing great food. The stars aligned and the love story is alive and flourishing at their little French intro in Hialeah, La Fresa Francesa.