In this role, Chef Martineau and his team will design a spectacular seven-course progressive tasting menu for event sponsors and their guests at the unique Connoisseurs’ Circle. Now in its fourth year, the Connoisseurs’ Circle will be held on Friday night, September 6 at El Encanto. This VIP experience creates a wonderful opportunity for guests to enjoy Chef Martineau’s culinary expertise up close on the Friday night before Taste of the Town’s traditional food and wine event, which is set for Sunday afternoon, September 8, at Riviera Park Gardens.

The event’s Leadership Council Co-Chairs Jennifer Jaqua and Theresa Borgatello-Carlson are overseeing logistics and fundraising for the Connoisseurs’ Circle. Jaqua comments: “With Chef Patrice at the helm this year, we are being true to the name Connoisseurs’ Circle. We look forward to a dazzling and interactive evening of culinary delights, during which we’ll watch and listen as the Chef prepares his courses for an exclusive gastronomic experience.” Borgatello-Carlson adds: “We are excited about our move to the historic El Encanto property. The hotel is as much a part of Santa Barbara life as the Taste of the Town tradition, and it makes great sense to celebrate our inaugural year at the venue with El Encanto’s own chef taking the lead.”

Other players are set for Taste of the Town weekend, as well. Opal Restaurant & Bar co-owners Richard Yates and Tina Takaya resume their roles overseeing the main event as Taste of the Town Honorary Co-Chairs. BMW Santa Barbara is Official Automotive Sponsor, while MarBorg Industries and The Berry Man, Inc. also return to sponsor. Media partners will include KEYT3, Cumulus Radio, and First Click. Local artist, Karen Folsom, also joins the 2013 effort. She created a mixed-media piece which will serve as the signifying art work for the event throughout this year and will be auctioned off at the Connoisseurs’ Circle.

All proceeds from Taste of the Town support the local programs and services of the Arthritis Foundation. Sponsorship opportunities are available for those interested in access to the Connoisseurs’ Circle. Taste of the Town main event tickets purchased in advance are $125 per person; tickets at the door will be $150. Early reservations are encouraged by calling the Arthritis Foundation at 805-563-4685 or by visiting

About the Arthritis Foundation: Striking one in every five adults and 300,000 children, arthritis is the nation’s leading cause of disability. The Arthritis Foundation ( is committed to raising awareness and reducing the impact of this serious, painful and unacceptable disease, which can rob people of living life to its fullest. The Foundation is the nation’s largest private funder of arthritis research, and has given more than $450 million in grants during the past six decade). It fights for health care policies that improve the lives of the millions with arthritis and provides life-enhancing information and patient education programs to empower those with arthritis. For more information, please contact the Arthritis Foundation, Santa Barbara office at 805-563-4685.

About Patrice Martineau: Prior to joining El Encanto, Chef Martineau was the Chef De Cuisine at PETER at THE PENINSULA TOKYO, where he was first selected as the Opening Chef to launch the gastronomic restaurant. His former international experience also includes a two-year Executive Chef position at THE SAVOY in London. Starting off as the Sous Chef in 1999, Martineau quickly moved up through the ranks at DANIEL in New York City and became the Chef de Cuisine in 2003. Martineau’s colorful resume also consists of numerous television appearances on BBC, including a guest judge on the popular Celebrity Masterchef. With a Masters in the Culinary Arts from Chambre Syndicale de l’Aube, Martineau worked with Christophe Cussac from whom he learned the essentials of gastronomic cuisine and the skills needed to achieve the highest level of culinary skills.

Chef Martineau’s menu will incorporate freshly picked herbs and vegetables from the hotel’s Chef’s Garden as well as seasonal produce and Santa Barbara’s famous sea urchin. Customized offerings will include El Encanto’s personal Holstein cow, Ellie, who will produce signature El Encanto cheese. Upon re-opening in March, guests will enjoy spring favorites like Dashi Poached Local Halibut with Rosemary Flowers, Asparagus Risotto and Marinated Heirloom Tomatoes. Year-round dishes will include Braised Beef Cheeks in Red Wine, Slow-Roasted Daikon Radish and Parsley Sweet Garlic Sauce, Seaweed Custard with Poached Quail Eggs, and Caramelized Santa Barbara Uni and Yuzu Kosho Whipped Cream.

About El Encanto: Located in Santa Barbara’s American Riviera, the meticulously restored El Encanto reopens in March 2013 as part of the luxurious Orient-Express portfolio. The iconic early 20th-century property is situated atop a hillside, offering sweeping views of the Pacific Ocean. Nestled amid seven acres of gloriously landscaped gardens with a historic trellised lined arbor and lily pond, El Encanto’s 92 bungalows offer a secluded retreat. Designed in quintessential California bungalow styles, El Encanto offers an authentic setting for romance and rediscovery. Following its reopening, guests will enjoy a beautifully appointed boutique spa, signature restaurant featuring California coastal cuisine and a Santa Barbara dedicated wine list, a sumptuous outdoor swimming pool, a window-lined ballroom with private terrace, three meeting rooms with panoramic ocean views, and an array of outdoor event venues.

About Orient-Express: Orient-Express Hotels Ltd. is a luxury hotel company and sophisticated adventure travel operator which seeks to deliver memorable experiences that are the ultimate expression of each destination’s authentic culture. The Company has offered exceptional luxury travel experiences since 1976, when it purchased Hotel Cipriani in Venice and then shortly thereafter recreated the celebrated Venice Simplon-Orient-Express, linking London, Paris and Venice, along with other European cities. Today the Orient-Express brand embraces 45 hotel, cruise and luxury rail businesses in 22 countries, including distinctive properties such as Hotel Cipriani in Venice, Grand Hotel Europe in St Petersburg, Hotel Ritz Madrid, Mount Nelson Hotel in Cape Town, Copacabana Palace in Rio de Janeiro and Maroma Resort and Spa on Mexico’s Riviera Maya. The Company also operates six luxury tourist trains, two river cruise operations and the ‘21’ Club, one of New York’s most iconic restaurants and watering holes.


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