Guillaume Burlion sends a dish of Sautéed Whole Fresh Lobster with Tomato Provencal into the dining room.

A diamond-studded
new chef sets up at
Diamond Head Grill

Guillaume Burlion has been a regular visitor to Hawaii for a dozen years, always promising himself that someday he'd figure out how to stick around.

"I've said, 'One day I'm just going to stay here.' Because the bad part is when you have to go back to the mainland," Burlion says.

His last flight over was on a one-way ticket. Burlion is at work revamping the menu as the new chef at the Diamond Head Grill.

He arrives with significant credentials: As executive chef at the Wild Boar in Nashville, Tenn., he oversaw a restaurant that carried the ultimate five-diamond rating from AAA.

His last posting was at his own restaurant, La Vie en Rose Bistro in New London, Conn.

Burlion believes the Diamond Head Grill can earn the quintuple diamonds as well. "This is what I am shooting for," he said. "My goal is to go all the way."

Hawaii has only one five-diamond restaurant, La Mer at the Halekulani.

Trained in Paris, Burlion worked his way through such Michelin-rated restaurants as Maxim's before moving to the United States.

He is completing a new menu for Diamond Head Grill, reflecting his continental-French style with an emphasis on local fish and produce.

The elegant restaurant, in the W Honolulu at the east end of Waikiki, opened as David Paul's Diamond Head Grill in 1998. When the W purchased the property a year later, chef David Paul Johnson was replaced and a series of chefs has followed.

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