Chef Healy started his career in France where he lived for five years and trained under chefs Alain Ducasse, Jean and Pierre Troisgros, Michel Guerard and Roger Verge, all recipients of France’s highest restaurant honor; a 3 star rating by the pretigious Michelin Guide.
Upon his return to the States, Patrick won critical acclaim for his cuisine at Le Saint Germain and Colette before opening his own restaurant: Champagne. As Executive Chef of The Buffalo Club, Chef Healy is recognized for revitalizing traditional American cuisine by intermingling culinary influences from regions across the country and grounding them with his respect for tradition and classical technique.
He is credited with making Los Angeles’ exclusive Buffalo Club one of the most renowned American culinary landmarks in the United States. Since the opening of The Buffalo Club, Chef Healy has received critical acclaim from The Los Angeles Times, New York Times, Gourmet Magazine amongst many prominent publications. Patrick has also received numerous prestigious awards:
Patrick received The Robert Mondavi ”Culinary Award of Excellence“, was elected to Food & Wine Magazine’s ”Honor Roll of American Chefs “and was twice voted ”Chef Of The Year”Patrick has been recognized in The Los Angeles Times “The Fabulous Fifty”, been twice awarded the Conde Nast Traveler Magazine’s ”Distinguished Restaurant Award” , twice awarded The Southern California Restaurant Writers Association’s”Four Star Circle of Fame Award”
Our story begins...
Motorcycling down a grungy industrial stretch of Olympic Boulevard in Santa Monica on a hot summer’s night in 1990, Anthony Yerkovich noticed amongst the tacquerias, body shops and razor wire an old, unlit Streamline Moderne neon sign perched on the front of a faded, single story stucco building. A dive bar.
Strolling in, he ordered a cold beer and, through the dim light, contemplated the scuffed linoleum, scarred pool table and broken plaster: the place had clearly seen better days. Yerkovich bought another beer then, shortly thereafter, the bar. He’d decided he would build a restaurant: a classic East Coast Prohibition-era speakeasy/supper club.This seemed as good a place as any.
The following year, after the usual delays, construction commenced. The building was gutted, floor-to-ceiling, the exterior walls only left standing. Under the design supervision of the now internationally-renowned architects Ike and Kligerman, there slowly arose from the rubble a breathtaking Art Deco incarnation of the rookie restaurateur’s vision: custom mahogany bar and wainscoting, burgundy leather booths, coffered ceiling and Venetian plaster walls…
The next and certainly most significant move was to bring on board the acclaimed and award-winning chef Patrick Healy, who created an innovative dream menu of American regional cuisine: Yankee pot roast, biscuit-crust chicken pot pie, collard greens, fried okra, his signature pepper-crusted salmon, incomparable macaroni and cheese…a culinary grand slam.
The doors opened on October 22, 1994. The Buffalo Club was in business. And what a business it has become! Over the years The Buffalo Club has earned widespread acclaim, rave reviews and been featured in countless publications, including:
Vogue, “People like Tom Cruise, Robert DeNiro, Mick Jagger and Madonna chow down on gourmet comfort food in a 1920’s speakeasy setting.”
“What The Buffalo Club’s owner, Anthony Yerkovich, has done for Hollywood glamour dressing is the same thing he did for Armani suits when he created “Miami Vice”: he has provide a stylish setting.”
“The intimate supper club is as tastefully outfitted as a robber baron’s private railway car…One night, six of us eat our way through much of the menu, from appetizers to desserts, and there’s not a bad dish among them.”
“From day one Patrick Healy’s cooking has been a thing of gastronomic joy…Renowned for his authentic French-country cuisine (Julia Child called him the best young American toque cooking a la francaise) – Healy has rediscovered his roots and produced an all-American menu for Yerkovich’s club.”
“A place with more ease than attitude, more glow than flash.”
Which brings us to the present. A good twenty years after our doors first opened, so much around us has changed. What seems like half the film, TV, music and internet companies in L.A. have moved into our now-gentrified neighborhood, many having discovered it through their first visit to the club. Around town, countless bars and restaurants have changed ownership, chefs, management, concepts or simply gone out of business; more than a few having tried to duplicate – with mixed results – the inimitable Prohibition-era allure of a certain establishment. Trends have come and trends have gone. And yet, some things remain the same.
A decade or more before the speakeasy fad, gourmet comfort food craze, London private club vogue and mixology ubiquitousness…there was – and still is –The Buffalo Club: above the fray, under the radar, ahead of the curve.