Jack Evrensel, owner of Araxi Restaurant in Whistler and three Vancouver restaurants, has been named Restauranteur of the Year by the trade publication Food Service and Hospitality Magazine.
Evrensel was honoured at the 18 th annual Pinnacle Awards Banquet in Toronto on Dec. 4.
“I would like to accept this award on behalf of everyone I work with in Vancouver and Whistler,” said Evrensel, crediting the talented staff for making Araxi, CinCin, Blue Water Café and West some of the best restaurants in Canada.
Araxi, Evrensel’s first restaurant in B.C. and one of the first fine dining restaurants in Whistler, celebrated its 25 th anniversary this past fall. Araxi has won numerous awards and the staff is known for their knowledge and meticulous attention to detail.
Evrensel is also known for renovating at least some part of the restaurant on an annual basis.
“Everything influences you,” Evrensel said in a release, “some good, some bad. The important thing is to be open to ideas and never compromise.”
Evrensel moved from Montreal to Whistler in 1980 and opened Araxi, named after his wife, on Oct. 31, 1981. In 1998 he was named Restaurateur of the Year by the B.C. Restaurant & Foodservice Association. Also in 1998, he took his first team of chefs and sommeliers to New York to support the James Beard House. Evrensel has been a member of the James Beard Culinary Foundation since 1998 and has led two more culinary teams to James Beard House, in 2002 and 2006. He is also a founding board member of the Chef’s Table Society.