Chef Gray Kunz of Cafe Gray Deluxe, poses for a picture at Pacific Place in Admiralty. 15MAR17 SCMP / Xiaomei Chen (Photo by Chen Xiaomei/South China Morning Post via Getty Images)
Food - Drink
Gary Kunz's Devastating Death In 2020
Gray Kunz was a beloved chef who made a name for himself in New York City during the 90s, where he introduced new cuisines to Americans and advocated for local sourcing, freshness, and sustainability regarding ingredients. Kunz was still running two branches of his Café Gray Deluxe restaurants when, in 2020, he died of a stroke.
Kunz was only 65, but left behind a huge legacy. He oversaw chefs who would later achieve their own renown, like Andrew Carmellini, Floyd Cardoz, Corey Lee, and Rocco DiSpirito, and his biggest claim to fame was the way he fused different cultures together on the plate, taking cues from his Swiss, Irish, and Singaporean heritage.
Besides his acclaimed restaurants, Kunz also released his influential cookbook “The Elements of Taste” in 2001, and invented the Kunz spoon, designed for sauce-making and plating. His restaurant Café Gray Deluxe remembered him as “the chefs’ chef,” and a student of his recalled that "Every young chef wanted to learn from him."