Yes, you can go home again. Former Top Chef contestant Jesse Sandlin, who opened Vino Rosina's kitchen in Harbor East in spring 2010, is back at the restaurant as its top chef again.
I stumbled on this information as I walking past the restaurant today. A chalkboard sign, pictured, announced, "Our Top Chef is Back!"
"We're going to have fun," Jesse said on the phone this afternoon. "We're doing a pretty big overhaul of the menu."
She's waiting for a new sous chef to come on board before she starts making any big changes. She said the restaurant would return to its wine-bar roots with small plates and some larger options.
Vino Rosina has been through a couple of chef changes. When Jesse left the restaurant in early 2011, Sajin Renae (now at Fork and Wrench) took over; then Devlyn Ray, who recently left.
Jesse said owner Jim Lancaster called her and asked if she was interested in returning. Since leaving Vino Rosina, she has worked at Gunpowder Bison & Trading Co. and Pazo.
Jesse, who went to Glen Burnie High School, was on Bravo's Top Chef in 2009 with Frederick natives Michael and Bryan Voltaggio, who came in first and second, respectively. At the time, she was working at the now defunct Abacrombie Fine Foods.
Jesse likes the challenge of returning to Vino Rosina. "There's a ton of competition in the area," she said. "We're going to be a wine bar with really good food."
Photo by me