Cygnus27, Grand Rapids’ sky-high restaurant located on the 27th floor of the historic Amway Grand Plaza Hotel, is pleased to announce the appointment of Stephan VanHeulen to chef de cuisine. VanHeulen will continue to build on the diverse menu of contemporary twists on Latin favorites, while creating new experiences for Grand Rapids diners.
“Cygnus27 already has a beloved menu that I want to enhance by adding in some of my favorite dishes and creating new programs for the restaurant,” says VanHeulen. “I love sourcing fresh seafood and local ingredients from nearby farms and I plan on incorporating this even more into my menu this year.”
VanHeulen found his love for cooking at the early age of 15, preparing his own twists on classic seafood dishes for his family. To hone in on his craft, he attended Secchia Culinary Institute where he became interested in unique techniques in food preparation, specifically using local Michigan ingredients.
VanHeulen began his career at AHC+Hospitality cooking for the restaurants within the group’s portfolio in Grand Rapids. He excelled here and quickly worked his way up to the main kitchen. With a goal to be in kitchen of Cygnus27, the premier food and beverage location within the hotel collection, he was named sous chef in 2016 and appointed to chef de cuisine shortly after.
Succeeding Chef Tim Moreno, who laid the foundation in the kitchen before transitioning to world-famous restaurants in New York City, VanHeulen plans to evolve the restaurant’s diverse menu by establishing additional relationships with local farms.
Set 27 stories up in the heart of Downtown Grand Rapids, Cygnus27 delivers a Latin-inspired dining experience and sophisticated cocktail lounge with panoramic views of the Grand River and surrounding cityscape. The menu includes Latin-infused dishes such as chorizo croquettes, ceviche peruano, littleneck clams and manchego fritters. Chef’s favorite dish is the Spanish octopus served with fingerling potatoes, fresh watercress, dehydrated Kalamata olives, pimenton oil and a squid ink vinaigrette.