A beloved local chef has moved into a new place on High Street.
A new restaurant opened in a familiar space this week, and locals with high esteem for its chef/owner and fond memories of Maxwell’s are clamoring to get in. The menu at Von Blaze is nothing short of drool-worthy, and the man cooking it up is Chris McDonald, a chef in Morgantown for more than 20 years including 12, most recently, at Stefano’s in Suncrest. His dream has always been to open his own place, so he and his partner in life and business, April Passaro, turned his vision into reality.
Q: Tell us about the place.
April Passaro: When we found this spot available, we knew it was where we wanted to be. The space was completely gutted, but the memories of one of Morgantown’s favorite spots still told a story, and we wanted to feed off of that. Chef Chris quickly had a vision, and we were able to create a welcoming atmosphere.
We also know that everyone is eager to get back to some sense of normalcy. We wanted to create a space where guests could come to enjoy good food and feel safe and comfortable.
Q: What makes Von Blaze different from other spots in town?
AP: Von Blaze is different in that Chef Chris takes something that everyone may be familiar with but he puts an incredibly unique spin on it.
Q: Readers who know about Chris’ pickles will know why this question is so important. Will Von Blaze serve them?
AP: We will be bringing back the chef’s famous pickles. They will be served with each meal and also sold in the restaurant soon.
Q: What should we eat first?
AP: Our lobster dog is a fan favorite—it’s Chris’ take on a lobster roll. Everything we make is house-made.
Q: Anything else we should know about Von Blaze?
AP: Together we were able to turn this vision into a beautiful spot that we get to share with the community. It’s also a family affair. We have four kids between us: Andrew, 16; Daniel 14; Hunter, 13; and Rilei, 1. The kids are all very involved. The two older boys work at the restaurant, and the younger ones help out when they can. Andrew would even like to follow in his step-dad’s footsteps one day and become a chef.