Republique’s Chef Duo Embody the Essence of Teamwork.
Excellence and accomplishment feel even sweeter when they are the result of the collective; a story of teamwork. This philosophy rings very true for trendy French-inspired eatery Republique. The brains and tastebuds behind the restaurant are the dynamic husband and wife duo: Margarita and Walter Manzke. The two have their own beautiful and storied pasts but at the heart of the operation is the love they have for food, and for working with each other.
Margarita and Walter met 18 years ago during their time at Patina, the now shuttered but still iconic LA fine dining establishment under Joachin Spichal. From there they honed their talents and opened restaurants in LA and the Philippines, where Margarita was born. Margarita is Rebublique’s pastry master, having been a James Beard Award Pastry Chef nominee in 2017, 2018 and 2019. Walter is behind the restaurant’s French inspired menu, applying his experience
from mentor Alain Ducasse. Although food originally brought them together, collaboration is what keeps them going. After almost two decades, they still find magic together in and out of the kitchen. Margarita defines their collaboration as “Working together with someone and creating something special; bringing ideas together and creating something cohesive.”
They almost never see eye to eye, but that’s a good thing. “We have opposite ways of looking at things...I’m very quick to react and make rapid decisions. On the other hand, Walter is the type to analyze the situation and come up with different scenarios. However, we always meet in the middle, which is a great place to be.”
THE PERFECT PAIRING
Margarita, Walter and Republique’s Beverage Director, Shawn Lickliter teamed up for the perfect pairing with Rémy Martin. Inspired by the generous notes of plum and fig marmalade along with the essence of toffee and toasted bread in Rémy Martin 1738®, the trio created a variation on the Harvard Cocktail. Spruced up with vanilla cacao, kumquat cordial and a touch of scotch, the cocktail was then perfectly paired with an almond dacquoise cake from Margarita (a buttery French dessert cake made with meringue and cream layers over a biscuit).