Ever since she can remember, Rising Star Pastry Chef Jeniece Grimshaw has been a lover of all things sweet. Born and raised in Northern California, as a young child Grimshaw rode the apron strings of her mom - an accomplished home baker who made everything from scratch. It was only a matter of time until she realized her interest in food extended way beyond the kitchen, so Grimshaw enrolled in culinary school in Sacramento, California, and after years of refining her palate and honing her skills, she fell head over heels into baking and cake decorating. Eventually Grimshaw decided it was time to broaden her culinary vocabulary and make a move outside of the city limits to California's beautiful central coast. It is here where she has gained recognition as a leading sugar artist and baker at Novo Restaurant and Big Sky Café in San Luis Obispo as well as Splash Café in Pismo Beach.
Following a creative writing degree from Western Washington University, Stuart found his passion for cooking after watching an episode of "Great Chefs of the World" on PBS, noting that "it was a revelation for my career." Shortly after, he enrolled at Bellingham Technical College and worked at a local Italian restaurant. In two years, he graduated with a degree in culinary arts but decided that he wanted additional training. Stuart moved to Seattle and saved-up to attend culinary school in Italy, working simultaneously at the Flying Fish under Chef/Owner Christine Keff and Cafe Campagne under Chef Daisley Gordon.
In 2004, he left for Costigliole d'Asti to attend the Italian Culinary Institute in a castle in Piemonte. He later staged at the Hotel Monte del Re in Dozza Italy outside of Bologna in the heart of Emilia-Romagna. While there, he made tortellini by the thousands and was immersed in the Italian food culture. Upon returning to the U.S. he headed to Cafe Juanita in Kirkland, Washington, looking for work. With some convincing, Stuart landed a job at Cafe Juanita as a prep cook, later moved to pastaoli, and finally, chef de cuisine.
In 2010, Stuart came to Spinasse as co-sous chef under Jason Stratton and furthered his expertise with the cuisine of northern Italy. In 2011, Stuart left to be the executive chef at Tom Douglas' Cuoco restaurant, but returned to Spinasse in 2013. In 2015, Stuart assumed the role of Executive Chef at Spinasse and adjacent, casual Italian eatery and bar, Artusi.
A Washington native, Nichols has worked extensively alongside Chef Marc Murphy at Landmarc Tribeca; at the New York style fish shack, Ditch Plains; and at Landmarc at the Time Warner Center where he served as Executive Chef of both that 300-seat restaurant and Murphy's catering company, Benchmarc Events. Nichols was promoted to Executive Chef of the greater Benchmarc restaurant group, a role that saw him managing Murphy's entire portfolio and serving as opening chef of Kingside restaurant in the Viceroy Hotel, a Benchmarc and Gerber Group joint venture. Nichols was recruited by the Gerber Group to open Irvington in the W Hotel in Union Square and concept Mr. Purple in the indigo Hotel in the Lower East Side. This succession of hits saw Nichols named one of the top 15 Chefs to Watch by Restaurant Hospitality in 2015. Now, at Rider, he is seizing the chance to leverage his diverse experience and marry it to a passion for local products.
Born in Hilo on the Big Island, Chef Sheldon acquired his love for cooking from his parents. His path led from Hilo High to the Culinary Institute of the Pacific onto an internship at Walt Disney World. Upon returning to Hawaii, Sheldon attended Maui Culinary Academy.
Sheldon competed in Bravo's Top Chef: Seattle as a finalist and winning Fan Favorite. He has recently opened up his very own restaurant, Tin Roof in Kahului, Maui, and serves up local dishes in take-out bowls. Chef Sheldon's food is a playful, fun take on classic dishes. His mix of innovative modern cuisine and adherence to tradition influence his dishes and help shape his menus.
Brooke Williamson was the winner of Bravo's "Top Chef All-Stars" Season 14, and was the runner-up in "Top Chef" Season 10, set in Seattle. She hosted MTV's first foodie series, "House of Food," and has also appeared on programs including "Knife Fight," "Watch What Happens Live," "Home & Family" and the international talk show, "Arise 360." Along with husband Nick Roberts, Williamson is co-owner and co-chef of several successful L.A.-area ventures including Hudson House, The Tripel, Playa Provisions and the culinary retail boutique Tripli-Kit, along with a fast-casual Hawaiian restaurant called Da Kikokiko.