In the independent restaurant world, being a chef can mean so much more than selling a plate of food. It can be a platform for creating change.
For the annual Chef Power List this year, our team at Restaurant Hospitality set out to put the spotlight on chefs who have a Big Idea. These are folks who use their kitchens and talents in ways to make the world a better place.
Earlier this year, Nation’s Restaurant News followed a similar theme with its Power List, spotlighting folks across the industry with Big Ideas to change the industry, featured in the January issue.
Turning that lens to chefs, we found New York chef Shenarri Freeman, who brings a plant-based mindset to soul food; Alexander Smalls, who sees an opportunity for the cuisines of Africa; and Chad Houser, who is growing his Dallas concept Café Momentum into a movement to train and develop youths coming out of the juvenile justice system.
We also found Jose Garces, a Philadelphia chef who has been sharing his kitchen with emerging chefs-in-residence to give them a post-pandemic career boost; and Shirley Chung in Los Angeles, a vocal advocate for stopping anti-Asian hate.
Meet the 2022 class of the RH Chef Power List.