Why Because of his commitment to bringing the Mediterranean to Michigan through his use of the most amazing local ingredients.
Born Cupertino, CA, 1974.
Education The Culinary Institute of America, Hyde Park, NY.
Experience Savarin and Park Avenue Cafe, Chicago.
Why he became a chef "In high school, I had a job in a restaurant. I used to skip classes to work there. The chef taught me how to make confit, how to break down a chicken. I'd cut my hands every which way. But I never called in sick."
Favorite warm-weather activity Riding his motorcycle in search of ramps (wild leeks). "In early spring, you can pull over and walk 10 feet off the road, and everywhere you look you'll see tons of ramps."
Most memorable dinner Michel Bras, a three-star restaurant in France. "You stay overnight and listen to the cowbells outside your room. I was like, Where am I? I'm in a three-star restaurant, listening to cow bells."
Won Best New Chef at: Tapawingo, Ellsworth, MI
- Sweet Corn Pancakes with Mt. Tam Cheese
- Mustard-and-Herb Chicken
- Roasted Broccoli with Fondue
- Summer Vegetable Stew with Braised Rabbit
- Chocolate-Pecan Cake
- Cumin-Scented Duck Breasts with Peach Succotash