WHO WE ARE
Located just off the entrance of the prestigious Sapphire Valley Country Club, the Library is the area's oldest standing structure with a well respected history.
What happens when an artist and a chef decide to open a restaurant? Creative deliciousness. When Chicos founder and visual artist Marvin Gralnick first met Chef Johannes Klapdohr, they both left impressed with each other’s unique skill and talent. It was no surprise that these two, along with their ever patient and beautiful wives decided to re-open Sapphire Valley’s historic Library and breathe color and life back into the 160 year old structure. Library Kitchen and Bar is a culinary and creative safe space influenced by flavors and cooking techniques from around the world. Our hope is that each guest leaves their meal feeling refreshed, energized, and inspired by their experience with us.
We offer a unique dining experience to the out of town visitors as well as the locals of the western North Carolina mountain area. With its historic charm and decor, chic design, and welcoming nature inspired seasonal menu, the Library will instantly become the area's premiere dining destination.
184 Cherokee Trail
Sapphire, NC 28774
*Last seating at 8:00pm
MARVIN & HELENE GRALNICK
CHEF JOHANNES & LIZ KLAPDOHR
Our Culinary Team
Chef Johannes Klapdohr
CHEF + OWNER
Johannes Klapdohr was born in Germany into a family of four generations of Hoteliers, Restaurateurs and Chefs. His great grandfather bought the famous hotel “Bellevue” in his home town Bad Kreuznach in 1906 and since than the Klapdohr family has made hospitality their passion.
Growing up in his parent’s hotel, he especially loved helping his father in the kitchen and he decided at an early age to become a chef and continue the family tradition.
After his graduation from culinary school, Chef Johannes went on to study in some of the finest hotels and Michelin star restaurants in the world including the Relais & Chateau “Hotel Bareiss” in the black forest and Eckard Witzigman’s legendary “Restaurant Aubergine” in Munich.
He came to the US in 1996 as Atlanta’s restaurants were seeking Michelin Star trained chefs to help during the Olympic Games. In 1998 he was assigned the position of Chef de Cuisine at “Nikolai’s Roof,” Atlanta’s finest award winning restaurant. He quickly earned himself a place in the best 100 Restaurants in the US and the Mobile four-star award.
In 2004 he became the Executive Chef of “The Lodge at Sea Island” the prestigious Mobile five star, AAA five diamond hotel of the coast of Georgia. During his tenure the Lodge became the # 1 small hotel in the US, including fine dining, and the # 1 golf hotel in the world in 2007.
From 2007 to 2009 he held the Position of Executive Chef of the “Culinary Vegetable Institute” and collaborated with Farmer Lee Jones at “Chefs Garden” in Ohio, which is one of the leading sustainable farms in the US, to create Farm to Table experiences for guests and hospitality professionals. In 2009 he rejoined with Richard Delany his former GM at “The Lodge at Sea Island” to create the High-end Resort “Old Edwards Inn” in Highlands NC.
In the past 7 years The Old Edwards Inn has become one of the most renowned resorts in the world and was rewarded the Relais & Chateau Status in 2015. In 2017, he and Marvin Gralnick partnered to create their own restaurant, “Library Kitchen and Bar” in Sapphire, NC.
Chef Joseph Houston
CHEF DE CUISINE
Joseph was born and raised in Lamoille County in northern Vermont. It wasn't until my late teens that he got into the kitchen as a dishwasher. He rose through the ranks from dishwasher, to prep cook, to line cook at Stowe Mountain Resort in Stowe Vermont. It was then his Banquet Chef handed him a Culinary School application and a letter of recommendation. After graduation from the New England Culinary Institute in 2008 he traveled to California, where he was at Erna's Elderberry House and Chateaux du Sureau and this was his first experience working under the Relais and Chateaux banner.
He later moved to North Carolina to Chapel Hill North Carolina and began working at the Fearrington House, a Ralais and Chartaux property, under Chef Colin Bedford and was a member of the team that helped achieve Relais Gourmand - one of the highest ranks achievable in the Relais community. In my tenure at Fearrington I started as a line cook and moved through the ranks Sous Chef, Catering Chef and lastly Sous Chef of their casual dining facility The Granery.
After fives years in the Triangle, an opportunity to move to Western North Carolina and begin working in Franklin at The Bowery presented itself. Both his wife (a fellow chef) and Joseph loved the area and the natural beauty mountains possessed. They both worked there for a year and a half where he was the Sous Chef and she ran the Saute station. They then learned of the restoration of The Library Kitchen + Bar Chef Johannes was undertaking and knew they both had to join. An interview later they accepted positions in the kitchen and the rest is history!
Chef Jose Ruiz
Jose Luis Ruiz was born in NY and worked his way up from dishwasher to Chef Saucier at the prestigious “Devon Yacht Club” in East Hampton on Long Island. In 1999 he had the opportunity to work at the “Hornet Dorsett Primavera Hotel” a four star Relais & Chateaux property located on Puerto Rico’s West Coast. Conde’ Nast magazine rated it one of the top small resort hotel properties in the Caribbean.
He started as saucier and later became the Chef de Cuisine of the “Blue Room” the exclusive fine dining restaurant of the Hotel. There he worked under 2 and 3 Star Michelin trained Executive Chef Aaron Wratten. After four years, he went back to the US to take advantage of the seasons working in Florida in the winter and Highlands, NC in the summer.
In Florida, he started working at some of the finest clubs including the “Grand Harbor Club”, “Mountain Lake”, “John’s Island Club” and the “Hawk’s Nest Golf Club”. From 2004 to 2010 Jose studied also under several chefs at the famous “Windsor”, a Private Polo and Golf Club in Vero Beach. There he became the sous chef of the fine dining beach club and in his last 2 years had the privilege to work under Executive Chef Eric Chavot a 3 Star Michelin Chef that run the kitchen at the Capital Hotel in London for 10 years.
In Highlands, NC he joined the culinary team of the “Wildcat Cliffs Country Club” from 2003 to 2016 where he held several positions including sous chef and executive chef. It was there where he heard about the opening of the “Library Kitchen and Bar” and Chef Jose joined the opening team in 2016.