“… he’s created a style you won’t find anywhere else.”
Michael Bauer, executive food and wine editor and restaurant critic San Francisco Chronicle
“…creative, motivated, organized, thoughtful, professional… kindness and calmness… lovely
qualities that you don’t always find in top chefs.”
Nancy Oakes, chef/partner/owner Boulevard Restaurant, Prospect Restaurant
“Liholiho Yacht Club has taken the Golden Gate City by storm.”
Elena North-Kelly, James Beard Foundation
Recognized for his heritage driven cooking style with California ingredients chef/owner Ravi Kapur opened Liholiho Yacht Club in January 2015 in San Francisco with rave reviews.
Born in Hawaii in 1976 to his Hawaiian Chinese mother and Indian father. The flavors of the diverse and strong food cultures of the islands have cultivated his palate DNA – a treasure he draws from to create his unique and delicious food at Liholiho Yacht Club.
Kapur’s desire to cook sparked while in college. Two years later he began his cook to chef journey. In 1998 he moved to San Francisco to attend the California Culinary Academy.
After graduation he moved to Santa Fe, New Mexico and worked at The Compound Restaurant and Coyote Café. He returned to San Francisco and worked at Redwood Park. Next, he joined Nancy Oakes’ Boulevard. He worked there for eight years and progressed from cook to sous chef to chef de cuisine. In 2010 he became the Executive Chef of Boulevard’s sister restaurant, Prospect.
In May 2011, Kapur’s life changed forever with the birth of his son, Makoa. Later that fall, Kapur resigned from Prospect in order to be an active parent during Makoa’s formative years. By 2012 he began his popular series of pop-ups also known as Liholiho Yacht Club. For the first time in his career he could elevate the soul of his culinary style – his heritage-driven food. And people loved it and wanted more!
It was during his hiatus that the idea and reality of having his own restaurant solidified. Four years later in January 2015, Kapur and his partner Jeff Hanak of NOPA & Nopalito opened their restaurant in the lower Nob Hill area of San Francisco. The new brick and mortar Liholiho Yacht Club is a destination experience that represents the sum of their core values, expectations and inspiration. Simply put, they offer hospitality, service and delicious food created from the best ingredients California has to offer and an atmosphere that is fun and energetic. An interesting feature of this restaurant is the open kitchen located in the middle of the restaurant. This provides guests with an entertaining and impressive view of the precision and care that is given to each creation. Indeed, the unique attraction is the food!
Liholiho Yacht Club is the playful name used by his Kealoha Uncles in Maui back in the day when they formed a club to raise money to fund their hobby of racing Hobie Cats (not yachts) and they lived on Liholiho Street (not at the marina). Really, it was an early version of a beach pop-up that offered good local food, live music, and fun hang out time with friends! What his Uncle said, “What could be better than to throw a party that allows us to do what we love!” And this is what Kapur feels he is doing at Liholiho Yacht Club
Kapur, April and Makoa live in the Mission. On Sundays when the restaurant is closed his favorite thing to do is to spend the day playing with his son and date night with his wife. Ever year he is also involved with fund raising for Meals on Wheels of San Francisco.
He has been featured in an episode of the TV show, The Movable Feast… and in a video produced by Vice.com. He has also appeared in the Iron Chef.
Awards & Recognition
• 2016 Food & Wine Best New Chef Winner
• 2016 San Francisco Chronicle Top 100 Restaurants
• 2016 James Beard Award Best New Restaurant Finalist
• 2016 Bon Appetit America’s Best New Restaurants Finalist
• 2015 SF Eater Restaurant of the Year
• 2015 San Francisco Magazine Chef of the Year
• 2015 7×7 Best of SF 2015: Eat + Drink (Reader’s Choice) • 2012 San Francisco Magazine Rising Star Chef (tie)