Spuntino Wine Bar & Italian Tapas
Michel Desjardins is a dynamic and inventive addition to the Spuntino Wine Bar & Italian Tapas team in Clifton, NJ. Serving as Chef de Cuisine, Desjardins has made great strides to continue producing imaginative and authentic cuisine.
Originally from rural Haiti, one of the first jobs Desjardins took in the United States was a line cook position in the famed Essex County Country Club in West Orange. Frankly, he initially took the job to help pay the bills – but the hustle and bustle of the country club’s kitchen ended up inspiring a career. Desjardins graduated from the culinary program at Hudson County Community College at the top of his class, and has spent time working in kitchens throughout the Garden State, including George & Martha’s American Grille in Morristown and Atrium West. He also held a coveted externship at Daniel’s in New York City. His experience as a line cook still influences the Union, NJ native today.
Desjardins relishes in the tapas concept at the Spuntino Wine Bar & Italian Tapas Kitchen. The small plates design of the menu – a style of dining he personally prefers, as he is not a fan of sticking to one main entrée – has allowed him to experiment with portion size and unique pairings, providing his customers with a diverse culinary experience in one sitting. With over 25 years of culinary experience, Desjardins has been able to build a strong relationship with food. His eagerness to mix innovative with traditional techniques has truly shined at Spuntino Wine & Italian Tapas.
Desjardins’ culinary influence reaches far beyond the walls of the Clifton restaurant, as he also works to support the local food industry. He regularly teams up with City Green, a non-profit organization dedicated to facilitating the establishment of urban farms and gardens in northern NJ, to help emphasize and bring attention to the importance of farm-fresh foods. Desjardins also makes regular appearances at the Ramsey and Montclair Farmers Markets, hosting cooking demonstrations that bring the farm-to-table concept to life.