Keller + Manni

The People
Thomas, Chi and Armando
The Innovators
Chefs + Artisans
Thomas Keller
Thomas Keller
Chef

Thomas Keller is renowned for his culinary skills and his exceptionally high standards.

As the first and only American-born chef to hold multiple three-star ratings from the Michelin Guide, he has established a collection of restaurants that set a new paradigm within the hospitality profession. Read More

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In 1994, Keller took ownership of The French Laundry in Yountville, quickly garnering nationwide acclaim. Keller’s restaurant group also includes French bistro Bouchon, with locations in Yountville, Las Vegas and Beverly Hills; Per Se in New York; Ad Hoc in Yountville; and Bouchon Bakeries in New York, Las Vegas and Beverly Hills.

Keller is the author of five cookbooks, of which more than one million copies are in print. His award-winning “The French Laundry” cookbook debuted in 1999, followed by “Bouchon” and “Under Pressure.” He also authored “Ad Hoc at Home,” which received awards from IACP and the James Beard Foundation, in addition to appearing on The New York Times Best Sellers list for six weeks. His most recent cookbook is “Bouchon Bakery.”

In January 2017, Keller, along with chef Daniel Boulud, led Team USA to win gold in the Bocuse d’Or, the elite worldwide cooking competition started by legendary French chef Paul Bocuse.

Chi Bui
Chi Bui
Chocolatier

Chi Bui is the head chocolatier of Thomas Keller and Armando Manni’s K+M Extravirgin Chocolate. She oversees production, bean sourcing, product development and K+M’s ongoing research with the University of Florence.

Bui brings her previous experience with the United Nations Development Program to her work sourcing responsibly grown cacao beans from around the world. Read More

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Bui came to K+M from Romera restaurant in New York, where she worked on the highly praised chocolate program: a groundbreaking single-origin, bean-to-bar effort that was pioneering for a fine-dining restaurant. At Romera, Bui worked with neurologist-chef Miguel Sanchez Romera, who introduced her to the idea of integrating health, science, art and gastronomy.

Bui also honed her chocolate-making skills as the head chocolatier at Cacao Prieto in Brooklyn. Before focusing exclusively on chocolate, she worked in the pastry kitchens of some of New York City’s finest restaurants, including Le Bernardin, Union Square Cafe, Gotham Bar and Grill and Daniel.

Bui’s previous work includes working at the United Nations Development Program, where she helped developing countries get funding and technical resources and establish networking infrastructure. Bui holds a BA in literature and writing from the Eugene Lang College at The New School.

Armando Manni
Armando Manni
Olive Oil Producer

Armando Manni started his organic extra-virgin olive oil company, MANNI oil, in 2000 after a successful career as a photographer, writer and a director.

His oil quickly became a globally recognized brand synonymous with quality and flavor, and has been praised by top-ranked chefs and food writers around the world. Read More

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Armando Manni uses a singular “Live Oil” process, which he developed in partnership with the University of Florence and the National Council of Research of Italy. The process makes MANNI organic extra-virgin olive oil the only oil in the world to maintain its extra-virgin quality and taste for three years, instead of the industry-standard 12 months. The Live Oil process also gives Manni oil higher levels of antioxidants (phenols) than any other olive oil.

Manni led the research behind K+M, when he and Chef Keller again worked with the University of Florence to test a chocolate that used MANNI oil in place of cocoa butter. The goal was to create a chocolate production methodology that retains the naturally occurring antioxidants of the cocoa beans, unlike traditional chocolate-making processes, which can cause the loss of up to 60-80 percent.

Armando Manni began his career studying Economics at LUISS University in Rome and at the University of Rome La Sapienza, then studied photography at the Istituto Europeo di Design in Rome and emerged as one of Italy's top young photographers in the 1980s.

Through the '80s and '90s, Manni directed some of the biggest hits on Italian television, and as a scriptwriter he won the European Script Fund twice. “Elvjs & Merilijn,” Manni’s first feature film, was declared of "National Cultural Interest" by the Italian Presidency of the Council of Ministers. The film has since developed an international cult following as well as critical acclaim and prizes at film festivals around the world, including the Golden Globe award in Italy.

Thomas Keller

Chef

In 1994, Keller took ownership of The French Laundry in Yountville, quickly garnering nationwide acclaim. Keller’s restaurant group also includes French bistro Bouchon, with locations in Yountville, Las Vegas and Beverly Hills; Per Se in New York; Ad Hoc in Yountville; and Bouchon Bakeries in New York, Las Vegas and Beverly Hills.

Keller is the author of five cookbooks, of which more than one million copies are in print. His award-winning “The French Laundry” cookbook debuted in 1999, followed by “Bouchon” and “Under Pressure.” He also authored “Ad Hoc at Home,” which received awards from IACP and the James Beard Foundation, in addition to appearing on The New York Times Best Sellers list for six weeks. His most recent cookbook is “Bouchon Bakery.”

In January 2017, Keller, along with chef Daniel Boulud, led Team USA to win gold in the Bocuse d’Or, the elite worldwide cooking competition started by legendary French chef Paul Bocuse.

Chi Bui

Chocolatier

Bui came to K+M from Romera restaurant in New York, where she worked on the highly praised chocolate program: a groundbreaking single-origin, bean-to-bar effort that was pioneering for a fine-dining restaurant. At Romera, Bui worked with neurologist-chef Miguel Sanchez Romera, who introduced her to the idea of integrating health, science, art and gastronomy.

Bui also honed her chocolate-making skills as the head chocolatier at Cacao Prieto in Brooklyn. Before focusing exclusively on chocolate, she worked in the pastry kitchens of some of New York City’s finest restaurants, including Le Bernardin, Union Square Cafe, Gotham Bar and Grill and Daniel.

Bui’s previous work includes working at the United Nations Development Program, where she helped developing countries get funding and technical resources and establish networking infrastructure. Bui holds a BA in literature and writing from the Eugene Lang College at The New School.

Armando Manni

Olive Oil Producer

Armando Manni uses a singular “Live Oil” process, which he developed in partnership with the University of Florence and the National Council of Research of Italy. The process makes MANNI organic extra-virgin olive oil the only oil in the world to maintain its extra-virgin quality and taste for three years, instead of the industry-standard 12 months. The Live Oil process also gives Manni oil higher levels of antioxidants (phenols) than any other olive oil.

Manni led the research behind K+M, when he and Chef Keller again worked with the University of Florence to test a chocolate that used MANNI oil in place of cocoa butter. The goal was to create a chocolate production methodology that retains the naturally occurring antioxidants of the cocoa beans, unlike traditional chocolate-making processes, which can cause the loss of up to 60-80 percent.

Armando Manni began his career studying Economics at LUISS University in Rome and at the University of Rome La Sapienza, then studied photography at the Istituto Europeo di Design in Rome and emerged as one of Italy's top young photographers in the 1980s.

Through the '80s and '90s, Manni directed some of the biggest hits on Italian television, and as a scriptwriter he won the European Script Fund twice. “Elvjs & Merilijn,” Manni’s first feature film, was declared of "National Cultural Interest" by the Italian Presidency of the Council of Ministers. The film has since developed an international cult following as well as critical acclaim and prizes at film festivals around the world, including the Golden Globe award in Italy.