Page Header

Last Year's Participating Chefs  
Jody Adams Jody Adams
Rialto, TRADE

Jody Adams is the chef/owner of Rialto in Cambridge and chef/co-owner of TRADE in Boston. She was recently a contestant on the second season of Bravo’s Top Chef Masters. Her regional menus that combine New England ingredients with Italian culinary traditions reflect her commitment to supporting local farms. In 2007, Adams launched Guerilla Grilling, an educational program that connects her staff to the vendors and farmers that supply her restaurants. She has also published a cookbook, In the Hands of a Chef: Cooking with Jody Adams of Rialto Restaurant.
Brian Alberg Brian Alberg
The Red Lion Inn

A native of Copake, New York, Brian Alberg began his culinary career as an apprentice at the former L’hostellerie Bressane. After graduating from the Culinary Institute of America in 1987, he oversaw the kitchens in a number of high-profile Berkshire restaurants. He left the area in 1993 to become executive chef at Dudley’s Restaurant in Westchester, NY, where he earned a “Very Good” rating from The New York Times and made his first appearance at the James Beard House. After serving as executive chef and director of food and beverage at the Old Saybrook Inn & Spa—a AAA Four-Diamond property— Alberg helped Marriott create a Mediterranean menu with recipes and training information that were distributed to properties across the globe. Today, he is executive chef and director of food and beverage at The Red Lion Inn in Stockbridge, Massachusetts. Alberg is a staunch supporter of the local food movement in the Berkshires and Hudson Valley.
Richard Baker
Upstairs on the Square

After opening a restaurant in Marshfield as chef, Chef Baker headed to Johnson & Wales. Richard then worked in a number of restaurants in Florida, but headed back to Massachusetts in 2011. In those years, Richard has worked at Amelia’s Kitchen, where he was chef, helped to open Steel & Rye in Milton as sous chef, and has landed happily as Executive Chef de Cuisine at UpStairs on the Square.
Jason Bautista
Turner Fisheries

Jason Bautista is the new Chef de Cuisine at the Westin Copley Place Hotel's restaurant, Turner Fisheries. Bautista will bring changes to Turner Fisheries’ menu, including incorporating a bit of a “Latin flare” in dishes where possible. Continuing to focus on sustainability above all else, Bautista will be changing the menu more frequently, based on seasonality.
David Blessing David Blessing
State Room

David Blessing grew up in Portland, Maine, where life revolved around family, food and celebrations. Sunday dinner with his large family was always a special occasion, featuring simple yet memorable Italian dishes that influence his cooking style today. Focusing on fresh ingredients from local farms and artisan producers, Blessing does as much or as little as needed to bring out the most flavor, allowing the food to speak for itself. Before joining State Room in 2010 as culinary arts director, he served as the executive chef at the Four Seasons Boston, home to nationally acclaimed restaurant Aujourd'hui and a multimillion-dollar catering and banquets facility. Blessing also was the executive sous chef at the Four Seasons Hotel, San Francisco, prepared foods associate coordinator for Whole Foods Market, and executive chef at the Stonehedge Inn in Tyngsboro, Massachusetts.
Nicole Coady NIcole Coady
Owner/Chocolatier FIXX Chocolates

Renowned pastry chef and chocolatier Nicole Coady, owner of Fixx Chocolates, got her start in the kitchen of a family-owned West Virginia hotel, where visitors repeatedly returned for the young chef’s creations. A graduate of Johnson & Wales with a degree in culinary and pastry arts, Coady spent her early career working side-by-side with Corporate Executive Pastry Chef Norman Love and Pastry Chef David Robbins at the Ritz Carlton in Buckhead, Atlanta. She joined Finale, the country’s first upscale dessert restaurant, as executive pastry chef in 1998 and was a driving force in building the company’s brand, reputation, and innovative menu of gourmet confections. At Fixx Chocolates, Coady’s love of chocolate combined with her unique vision for savory and thrilling combinations has resulted in an incredible offering of candy bars that keeps consumers coming back for more. 
Christopher Coombes Christopher Coombs

Christopher Coombs, executive chef and owner at Deuxave in the Back Bay, took his first restaurant job at 11, washing dishes at a seafood restaurant on the North Shore of Boston. He went on to study at the Culinary Institute of America in New York. He honed his skills at many restaurants in the Boston area and, during his 18-month tenure at The Inn at Little Washington in Virginia, prepared dinners for First Lady Laura Bush at The White House. At Deuxave, Coombs’s menus feature cuisine that is fresh, local, and seasonally inspired. He recently opened the casual yet refined Boston Chops steak bistro in the South End. 
Steve DiFillippo
Steve DiFillippo
Davio’s Northern Italian Steakhouse, Davio’s Cucina
After graduating from Boston University in 1982, Steve DiFillippo, owner of Davio’s Northern Italian Steakhouse and Davio’s Cucina, attended The Cambridge School of Culinary Arts to pursue his dream of becoming a chef. During his college years, DiFillippo worked his way up the ladder at SeaSide, a popular bar and restaurant located in Boston’s Faneuil Hall. He took over as executive chef when he graduated from culinary school. In 1985, at the age of 24, DiFillippo purchased his first restaurant: an existing spot named Davio’s in Boston’s Back Bay.  It would be here that DiFillippo would brand the name of Davio’s as synonymous with quality. In 2008, he was inducted into the Massachusetts Restaurant Hall of Fame. 
Jose Duarte Jose Duarte

In July 2000, chef Jose Duarte opened Taranta in Boston’s historic North End. The restaurant’s menu is a marriage between Italian and Peruvian cuisine, using unique Peruvian ingredients. Stuff Magazine has recognized Duarte as “Boston’s most gracious host,” and he has established himself as a leader in the green movement among local restaurants. Garbage production at Taranta has been reduced to 1% through composting, recycling, and buying local. Taranta also relies on green power, including a vehicle that runs with used cooking oil. Duarte is now working on developing culinary adventures around the world that focus on the traditional cuisine of each destination.
Jeffrey Fournier
51 Lincoln

Jeffrey Fournier grew up in a French-Armenian home, where delicacies such as raw lamb kibee were a regular part of his grandmother's menu. His exposure to eccentric dishes resulted in Fournier’s fascination with the kitchen, a space that he often chose over the playground. He became executive chef at Sophia's, located in Boston's Fenway district, in 2004, and left in 2005 to become executive chef of The Metropolitan Club. His signature dish—watermelon steak—is just one of the many examples of the carefully chosen blend of ingredients Fournier uses for his Latin inspired culinary creations. Seizing an opportunity to blend his artistic and culinary creativity, Fournier opened 51 Lincoln in Newton in late 2006.
Rich Garcia Rich Garcia
MC Medici at Renaissance Boston Waterfront Hotel

Richard Garcia is the executive chef of MC Medici at The Renaissance Boston Waterfront Hotel. Garcia entered the food industry at the age of 12, working at a neighborhood bakery in Quincy, MA, before joining the Marine Corps as a Food Service Specialist. Garcia brought his ideas and flavors to many award-winning restaurants before he signed on as executive chef of MC Medici. He is known for using the finest ingredients to create modern farm cuisine dishes that boast regional influences. The James Beard Foundation member was recognized by Star Chefs as one of Boston’s Rising Star Chefs and received the Sustainability Award for his dedication and contribution to sustainable culinary practices.
Will Gilson Will Gilson
Puritan & Co.

Will Gilson’s farm-to-table cooking is rooted in his work at The Herb Lyceum at Gilson’s, the restaurant on his family’s farm in Groton, Massachusetts. Gilson was only 17 when he began cooking there, and the experience served as an inspiration for his current restaurant, Puritan & Company—a refined yet rustic neighborhood eatery in Cambridge’s Inman Square featuring farmers’ market fare. Gilson began making a name for himself in the Boston area in 2007, when he opened the Garden at the Cellar in Cambridge. He left in 2011 to launch a series of successful restaurant ventures, including Eat at Adrian’s, located on Cape Cod.
Andy Husbands Andy Husbands
Tremont 647

Andy Husbands is the executive chef and owner of Tremont 647 and Sister Sorel, both located in the heart of Boston’s South End neighborhood. After travelling across the country and exploring the West Coast by motorcycle, Husbands was inspired to make bold choices in both his life and his cooking. He is no stranger to the spotlight, having appeared on season six of FOX’s  “Hell’s Kitchen” as well as on local television stations promoting his book, The Fearless Chef, published in 2009. Husbands’ cooking reflects his commitment to incorporating locally grown ingredients to add freshness and seasonal flavors to his menus. 
William Kovel William Kovel

William Kovel is the executive chef and owner of Catalyst Restaurant in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Before settling in Boston, Kovel’s culinary career took him overseas as well as to the West Coast, sparking his passion for food with simple flavors cultivated in Californian and European techniques. After his tenure working as the executive chef at the Four Seasons’ French restaurant, Aujourd’hui, and being named one of Boston Magazine’s talented “Chefs to Watch,” Kovel opened Catalyst in 2011. The establishment pays tribute to Kovel’s love of sustainable, fresh foods, and offers American cuisine with French influences.
Pino Maffeo
Lucia Ristorante

Chef Pino Maffeo is well known for his time as chef de cuisine at AZ in Manhattan, where, side-by-side with Patricia Yeo, he earned “three-stars” from The New York Times, Crain’s New York Business, and The New York Observer. After a successful second venture in New York, Pazo, he returned to Boston to revamp Café Louis into Restaurant L. In 2004, Restaurant L was named one of the best new restaurants in the country by Esquire, one of the top 10 new restaurants of the year by Travel & Leisure, and one of the “best new restaurants in the world” by the Robb Report. Now executive chef at Lucia Ristorante in Winchester, Massachusetts, Maffeo executes traditional dishes from the Abruzzo region of Italy, where owner Donato Frattaroli is from, while also incorporating some new, lighter twists on Italian fare.
Frank McClelland Frank McClelland
L'Espalier, Sel de la Terre

Frank McClelland is the owner and executive chef of New France Inc., a company that oversees L’Espalier in Boston—named as one of America’s “best” restaurants for over three decades—as well as Sel de la Terre, a trio of local bistros with boulangeries steeped in the French countryside tradition. McClelland’s menus are inspired by the New England flavors of his organic farm in Essex, Massachusetts, which provides heirloom produce for his restaurants. The James Beard chef penned his cookbook, Wine Mondays, and channels his “field to fork” philosophy in sustainable agriculture to provide environmentally friendly dining experiences.
Dante de Magistris Dante de Magistris
Restaurant dante
, il Casale

Dante de Magistris is the executive chef and co-owner of Restaurant dante in Cambridge, Massachusetts, as well as il Casale in Belmont, Massachusetts. Dante cultivated his culinary skills while traveling along Italy’s famed Amalfi Coast, and brought his love for the region’s cooking back to the United States where he opened restaurant dante. De Magistris works alongside his brothers in the kitchen to create fresh twists on Italian classics that have earned his establishment a coveted spot in Bon Appetit’s “Hot 10 Restaurants,” among other honors. The James Beard Award-nominee also creates family recipe-inspired dishes at il Casale, serving Italian comfort food reminiscent of his grandmother’s old-world traditions.
Tony Maws Tony Maws
Craigie on Main

Tony Maws’s ideology—that local, seasonal and sustainably sourced ingredients are intrinsically better—fuels his culinary creations. He combines Parisian “slow-food” cooking philosophy with ingredients from New England. He has been named one of America’s top 10 new chefs by Food & Wine magazine and Boston’s best chef by Boston Magazine. Maws has appeared on NBC’s Today Show and Fox News. At Craigie on Main, the Cambridge restaurant that opened in 2008, Maws’s earthy side and his mad-scientist side combine to create a menu best described as “refined rusticity.” Craige on Main is a newer, more spacious incarnation of Craigie Street Bistro, Maws’s first labor-of-love which opened in 2002 on Massachusetts Avenue. 
Brian Mercury

A native of Rochester, NY and a graduate of the Culinary Institute of America, Brian Mercury came to Boston in 2004 and landed a job working for Peter Davis, Executive Chef, The Charles Hotel. “Chef Davis helped me define my food. Local and sustainable are buzz words out there, but they were the foundation of my training long before the trend.” “I had a great opportunity to hone my skills at The Charles.” Mercury worked under the guidance of Executive Pastry Chef Dan Angelopolus and closely with Rialto’s Executive Pastry Chef Susan Abbott, whom he considers both great mentors. As a resident of Somerville and having worked in Cambridge for a number of years, Mercury always kept his eye on Harvest as he spent a great deal of time in Harvard Square. He jumped at the opportunity when the position of Harvest Executive Pastry Chef became available. “It is a perfect fit. I like to create desserts that are contemporary, refined and local. It matches the Harvest sensibility.”
Brendan Pelley Brendan Pelley
Zebra's Bistro

Brendan Pelley’s culinary career began at 15 with an afterschool job as a busboy and dishwasher at a busy neighborhood restaurant in his hometown of Chelmsford, Massachusetts. After college, he started as sous chef/pastry chef at the now closed but beloved Tryst Bistro in Beverly, where he learned the beauty of the freshest ingredients treated simply from chef-owner Peter Capalbo. He subsequently worked for Ken Oringer at Clio and chefs Marc Gaier and Clark Frasier at Summer Winter Restaurant. Pelley served as head chef of The Franklin Cape Ann and chef de cuisine at Alchemy, both in Gloucester. This spring Pelley took over as executive chef at Zebra’s Bistro and Wine Bar in Medfield. His ingredient-driven menu draws inspiration from his classical French training, an Italian sensibility for simplicity, and his love for all Asian cuisines.
Jason Santos
Blue Inc.

From smoldering liquid nitrogen salsa to orange gel that transforms into noodles when it hits hot broth, chef Jason Santos’ cooking offers guests a one-of-a-kind culinary experience. Perhaps that’s why he shined on celebrity chef Gordon Ramsay’s Hell’s Kitchen TV Show. Santos’ style, which combines Asian, French, and traditional American flavors with dazzling visual and textural twists, has been called “Julia Child meets Willy Wonka.” While serving as executive chef, Santos transformed Gargoyles on the Square in Somerville, a neighborhood stalwart, into a destination hotspot.  Now, Santos is owner and executive chef at the popular Blue Inc. in Boston. He also teaches culinary courses at Boston University and Cambridge Rindge and Latin High School, and serves as restaurant chair for “Taste of the Nation,” Share Our Strength’s benefit to eliminate childhood hunger.
Mark Sapienza Mark Sapienza
Cafe Fleuri, Langham Hotel

Mark Sapienza is the executive chef of The Langham, Boston, overseeing award-winning culinary endeavors at Café Fleuri, BOND restaurant and lounge, Saturday Chocolate Bar, and Sunday Jazz Brunch. Sapienza spent time working at the world-renowned Claridge’s hotel in London, England, before returning to Boston to become executive sous chef for the Boston Harbor Hotel, a five-star property. He has received numerous accolades from colleagues and food critics, including an invitation to present a dinner at the James Beard House in New York. Sapienza passion lies in marrying seasonal New England ingredients with modern French cooking.
Ron Savenor Ron Savenor
Savenor’s Market

Ron Savenor is the owner and master butcher of Savenor’s Market in Cambridge. A treasured Boston institution for more than 65 years, Savenor’s Market was once frequented by the Rockefellers and Kennedys, as well as Julia Child, who often featured Ron’s father, Jack Savenor, as her beloved butcher on her WGBH-produced show, The French Chef.
Michael Scelfo Michael Scelfo
Alden & Harlow

Chef Michael Scelfo has been drawn to the kitchen for as long as he can remember. After graduating from Western Culinary Institute, he began his career in the James Beard Award-winning Wildwood Kitchen in Portland, Oregon. He went on to oversee the kitchens of several popular restaurants with devoted local followings in New York and Boston. In 2009, Scelfo took the helm at Temple Bar in Cambridge, where his savvy use of whimsical, seasonal ingredients landed him critical praise. He then served as the first executive chef of Russell House Tavern, a restaurant that was named the 2012 Best Restaurant – Harvard Square by Boston Magazine and The Improper Bostonian. At Alden & Harlow, the Harvard Square restaurant he owns, Scelfo pays homage to his roots by making each ingredient shine, and ultimately, cooking from his heart.
Robert Sisca Robert Sisca
Bistro du Midi

Robert Sisca is the executive chef of Bistro du Midi, in Boston’s Back Bay. Sisca was most recently a sous chef at Le Bernardin, where he helped the restaurant earn a coveted three stars from Michelin and four stars from the New York Times. A graduate of Johnson & Wales, Sisca worked his way through New England, including Gracie’s in Providence and Bosun’s Bistro in Nantucket. Next in his native New York, first at One if By Land, Two if By Sea and then on to Le Bernardin with Eric Ripert. At Bistro du Midi Sisca celebrates the food of Provence, also know as the Midi Region. The menu reflects authentic Provençal style cuisine, ingredient-driven and complemented by tradition and technique.
Rich Vellante Rich Vellante
Legal Sea Foods

Executive chef of Legal Sea Foods since 1998, Rich Vellante oversees all of Legal’s culinary operations, developing new recipes and menus as well as managing and training the culinary staff at every Legal Sea Food’s location. He graduated from Hamilton College and studied at the French Culinary Institute in New York City before spending two years in Italy, cooking his way through several provinces using traditional, farm-fresh ingredients and seafood. Vellante has been voted “Menu Strategist of the Year” by Restaurant Business and was included among the nation’s Top 50 R&D Chefs by Nation’s Restaurant News.  He has designed numerous dinners for the Confrérie de la Chaîne des Rôtisseurs and repeated as guest chef at the prestigious James Beard House and Culinary Foundation in New York.
Brooke Vosika Brooke Vosika
Bristol Lounge, Four Seasons

Brooke Vosika is the executive chef at the Bristol Lounge and Four Seasons Hotel Boston. Vosika’s culinary career began as a line cook at Four Seasons Washington, DC. And during his record 29 years with the company, he has worked at Four Seasons Hotels in Chicago, Seattle, Atlanta, and New York before assuming his current position in Boston. The James Beard Foundation award winner has cooked for Presidents Reagan, Clinton, and Bush, and his dish earned the title of “Boston’s Best Burger” by Boston Magazine. Vosika’s love of local, artisan products contributes to a memorable culinary and dining experience.
Timothy Willis
Summer  Shack Cambridge

During an internship at Summer Shack’s Mohegan Sun Hotel and Casino location in Connecticut, chef Timothy Willis fell in love with the restaurant’s “Food Is Love” philosophy along with its commitment to preparing food simply, from scratch, using the best quality of fresh seafood and local produce. He flourished in this environment and after starting as a grill cook, he worked his way up to sous chef. Today, after moving to the Boston area, Willis is the executive chef of Jasper White’s original Summer Shack in Cambridge, Massachusetts. He oversees the food operations for both the restaurant and its growing catering division.


About the Festival