Chef Mike Mueller is the executive chef of Café and Bar Lurcat in Naples, Florida, where he is known for creating sophisticated American comfort food. We were fortunate to get an interview with him to learn more about their food, concept, and business philosophy at the restaurant.
FriendsEAT: Tell us a little something about your restaurant.
Chef Mike Mueller: Located in the popular Naples downtown Fifth Avenue district, Lurcat features stunning décor, top-notch service and a chef-driven menu of sophisticated American comfort food using fresh, seasonal ingredients. All of these elements combine to provide guests with a delightful all-around dining experience.
The dining menu is divided into three sections: Market/Seasonal changes six to eight weeks to highlight seasonal foods and flavors; Traditions is signature dishes – time-tested customer favorites that rarely change; and Voyage changes every six to eight weeks to highlight cuisine from different global regions. The bar offers a casual “small plates” menu for happy hour, dinner and late night dining – a great option for guests who want to enjoy lighter fare and wine, beer or cocktails.
FE: Are there any Awards you have received? Any you’re particularly proud of?
Chef Mike: Urban Spoon – Best Florida Restaurants, Best Donuts – Gulfshore Life Magazine, Wine Spectator Excellence Award
FE: What is your restaurant philosophy? Is there something that everyone strives for with each action taken at your restaurant?
Chef Mike: The D’Amico concept has always been built upon a family culture for our guests, colleagues and farmers. A close second is evolution. We are always trying to evolve with our techniques, purveyors, talent, global cuisine, etc. We regularly hold Monday meetings where every cook is invited to bring their ideas to the table. We change 60% of the menu every 60 days so we are always evolving and learning from one another.
FE: What is your most popular dish? Why do people love it?
Chef Mike: Lately it has been our Smoked Beef Brisket, Potato-Broccoli Gratin with Smoked Gouda and Cayenne-Maple Buttered Corn Bread. We bring in beautiful Prime Creekstone Farms briskets and season them for 24 hours, then smoke them for 17 hours outside on white oak logs. People can smell it blocks away!
FE: And what is the one cocktail your bartender loves to make?
Chef Mike: Our newest installment is the “Lurcat & Tonic” program, feature Fever Tree tonics in our 7 tonic drinks. The favorite of these is Anchor Distilling Company Old Tom Gin” paired with Elderflower Tonic, Star Anise, Lime, and local Honey Belle Orange (when in season).
Cafe and Bar Lurcat is located at 494 Fifth Avenue South, Naples, Florida 34102
Nearby Landmarks: Merrihue Mini Park, Coldwell Banker, and Sheldon Fine Art
Phone Number: (239) 213-3357
Hours of Operation:
- Open daily 05:00PM – 10:00PM
- Sun – Thu 04:00PM – 11:00PM
- Fri – Sat 04:00PM – 12:00AM
Dining Style: Full Service
Cuisine Type: Upscale Casual
Dress Code: Resort Casual
Price Range: $12-$39
Payment Options: Cash and Visa/MC/AMEX
Also check out Chef Mike Mueller’s delicious Korean BBQ Salmon Recipe.
Have you been there? Leave a review and check for Cafe Lurcat Coupons for your next visit.