Pierre Minhondo Obituary, Death – In 1968, he received his diploma from the hotel school in Biarritz, and after that, he worked in Paris at a number of well-known restaurants. In 1970, he applied for and was granted a visa that allowed him to take a position as the head chef at Le Chalet Basque, a restaurant located in San Rafael, California. After working for a total of two years at Le Chalet Basque, Roger opened the Normandi Restaurant in San Rafael. In 1974, he decided to open the Guernica Restaurant in Sausalito, but he sold the Normandi Restaurant first.
Before purchasing the Chalet Basque in 2000, he was the owner, operator, and head chef of the Guernica, which he had owned and operated for the previous 26 years. This man lived the American dream! In 1977, he wed Christine, and the couple went on to have three boys together. Roger was devoted to his wife and children, and he was a doting father and husband. He was an accomplished restaurateur, chef, and businessman all rolled into one. He left behind a solid foundation that his boys could continue to build upon.
He was a larger-than-life person who was fluent in four different languages. He was an incredible grandfather (Aitachi), and his love for his granddaughter Evie was beyond anything that could be expressed in words. Because of his affection for his family, he made it a habit to travel to Irissarry in France every year. He had a passion for exploration, and despite having cancer, he continued to go on annual cruises and attend Christine’s family gatherings. The Blessed Virgin Mary was the recipient of Roger’s devotion.
He would make a yearly trip to Lourdes, which is located in France. He had a deep affection for the local Basque community and was one of the first members of the Basque Cultural Centre. There, he was a director on the Catering Board for more than 30 years and remained involved up until the time of his passing. Friendships that would last a lifetime and have a significant impact on Roger’s life were forged among the local Basque community.
These relationships were of the utmost significance to him. In addition to that, he was a member of the San Francisco Basque Club as well as the Sonoma-Marin Basque Club, and he was a familiar face at the centre, the mus games, and many basque events. You would never find him without a beverage in one hand or a traditional Basque tune in the other, ready to be belted out by his enormous voice.