Savory and sweet. Two talented chefs from separate culinary backgrounds have come together at Interim Restaurant to create the perfect dining experience — from your first course to your last.
At the helm is Executive Chef David Krog. David took over the kitchen in 2016 and has raised the bar for this neighborhood restaurant, offering what he describes as “new American cuisine.” And as for that sweet side we mentioned, Pastry Chef Franck Oysel prepares the perfect endings for David’s savory culinary creations.
David and his team have created a dining experience that attracted a new local ownership group. In September, Memphis-based restaurateurs Nick Scott, Tony Westmoreland and Ed and Brittany Cabigao purchased Interim from its previous out-of-town owners. “We invested in Interim because we saw an opportunity to work with the Interim team and continue their growth, while at the same time continuing to grow the food culture in Memphis,” explains Nick.
David is a veteran of the restaurant business. As is the story of many truly gifted and passionate chefs, he started his career at the bottom — working as a busboy. A true love of food and cooking is what drove him through what he calls a training of “hard knocks.” He worked his way through the hierarchy of the kitchen world, honing his craft to ultimately earn the title of Executive Chef. “A few good kitchens and a couple of great chefs got me here. I am grateful for all of the experiences,” says David.
At Interim, David is pursuing his passion for good food. The inspiration behind his menu? “Whatever the farm is giving us. It’s important to me that we use local produce as much as possible,” he says. David is a master at sourcing great ingredients and preparing them in a simple yet elegant manner so that customers can taste the delicious quality of their natural essence. Using local ingredients means that his menu changes seasonally based on what is available at that particular time of the year. “I love winter dishes,” David says of his menu changes for the upcoming months. “Braised chicken, duck confit and cassoulet are a few of the new items that I am excited about.”
David’s culinary creations are not just delicious, but each plate is a work of art. The attention to detail is astounding. Before being blown away by the flavors of the dish, you are blown away by the presentation. Many of his dishes are almost too pretty to take a bite!
When dining at Interim, you must save room for dessert. Complementing David’s culinary masterpieces, Pastry Chef Franck Oysel creates sweet endings that are worth every calorie.
“In France, the dessert is the final chapter of a wonderful meal. It allows customers to leave with a little something sweet on their palates,” Franck explains. “For me, a meal is not complete without dessert.” We agree — and especially so when dining at Interim. Born and trained in France, Franck moved to Tennessee after falling in love with a Memphis girl. “When my now wife was living in France, teaching English at the local school, she would come to the pâtisserie where I worked and exchange English lessons for pastry lessons. And the rest is history!”
Following David’s lead, Franck creates delicious desserts that are also spectacular works of art. “My dessert menu is inspired by my desire to introduce our customers to some of the classic French desserts that are not typically eaten in the states,” Franck explains.
Franck’s signature dessert is the opera cake. His twist on the French classic is a delicate cake made of layers of sponge cake soaked in coffee syrup, layered with chocolate ganache and coffee buttercream and covered in a chocolate glaze. One bite and we are not surprised that it is a customer favorite — as well as the favorite of Franck’s wife.
In addition to the regular dinner menu, David offers special tasting menus. “You won’t see it on the menu,” he says. “Each one is different depending on what’s in my head that day and how long you want to sit. Paired with wines, or just enjoying the food only, it’s an opportunity for me to test new ideas with willing participants and to share thoughts that may or may not make it on the menu. It’s fun for me and the guests.”
The future is looking bright for Interim. Recognizing the opportunities he was given, David is eager to pass along his craft. “I have been very lucky to have great young cooks come to work with me. I like to teach the willing,” says David about training the next generation of cooks and chefs.
And from the point of view of the new owners, the kitchen is in the right hands. “Changes? None more than giving the team the platform to continue growth,” says Nick. “Dave and Franck are both vital in the operations at Interim. We stand beside them to grow their careers and support their beliefs in providing the highest standards of food and desserts. They are both true professionals and passionate about their crafts. And to be partnered with them is an honor.”
Our advice? Go hungry and save room for dessert!
Interim Restaurant is located at 5040 Sanderlin Ave., Memphis, TN 38117. The restaurant is open for lunch Monday through Friday, 11 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.; dinner nightly from 5:30 p.m. until close; and Sunday brunch from 10:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. For more information, call (901) 818-0821 or visit interimrestaurant.com.
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