CHEF HIRO SONE &
PASTRY CHEF LISSA DOUMANI


Chef Hiro Sone and his wife, Pastry Chef Lissa Doumani, owners of the much celebrated Terra Restaurant in St. Helena, California, portray the quintessential story of "East meets West." The husband and wife team met in 1983 as Hiro was training at Spago, Wolfgang Puck's renowned Los Angeles eatery. He later traveled to open the new Spago branch in Tokyo the following year and act as sous chef. Lissa followed him there to train their pastry chef in desserts.

After their Tokyo venture, the two decided to move back to Los Angeles together, and shared the same sentiment of wanting to open their own restaurant. And so, in 1988, Terra was born.

The cooking at Terra is a direct reflection of their heritages, travels, memories and personal tastes. Dishes resemble traces of Hiro's Japanese ancestry and his classical French and Italian training at Tsuji Cooking School. Flavors stemming from Lissa's Lebanese and European background, as well as her Napa Valley roots, clearly prevail in their menu. Each of the components of the seasonings from travels, inspiration from their love of Napa Valley and the wines it produces is fundamental to the foods they prepare.

Celebrating its 14th year, Terra has received honors and accolades including the DiRoNa Award since 1994, the "Wine Spectator Award of Excellence" for their wine list and service, and most recently, a 2002 "Ivy Award." Chef Hiro received the "Robert Mondavi Culinary Excellence" award and The James Beard House recently nominated him as "Best Chef in California." In the Bay Area Zagat, Terra is consistently in the top ten for food, service and d├ęcor.

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