Dave Molina and Mike Johnson

Dave Molina (left) has taken over as executive chef at Mike Johnson's (right) Boathouse at Forest Park. 

A chef who once took home the award for "world's best sandwich" has taken over at St. Louis' Boathouse at Forest Park.

The Boathouse, co-owned by St. Louis restaurateur Mike Johnson, announced in a statement Friday that Dave Molina has taken over as executive chef of the restaurant. He replaces chef Jack MacMurray in the position, who is now culinary director at Hamilton Hospitality, which includes 1111 Mississippi, Vin de Set and PW Pizza.

Molina is no stranger to Johnson's restaurants; he helped open the first location of Sugarfire Smoke House and later became a partner and executive chef of the popular barbecue joint. He's even earned international praise: In 2018, Molina took home a worldwide title for his sandwich skills. At the World Food Championships, he won the prize for Best Sandwich in the World for his Cuban Reuben. 

Molina says that when MacMurray left The Boathouse, he decided to step in and take over. 

"It's just an amazing, iconic spot in St. Louis," he says. "It's very unique, and it's just a very fun atmosphere to work in." 

Fans of the restaurant can expect things to mostly stay the same, except Molina says that the team will start offering more healthy options and smaller plates for sharing. 

While The Boathouse is still open during the winter, Molina says to expect more special events at the restaurant once the weather gets nicer. 

Boathouse at Forest Park, 6101 Government Dr., St. Louis, Missouri, 314.366.1555, boathousestl.com

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