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shaker and spear chef carolynn

A Culinary Mastermind

The Face Behind Our Seattle Restaurant

Meet the Chef, our culinary creator

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Celebrated chef Carolynn Spence may be relatively new to Seattle, but she’s a familiar name for foodies everywhere, thanks to her impressive résumé: 10 years as executive chef at Chateau Marmont, sous chef for Bobby Flay at Mesa Grill, and chef de cuisine on the opening team of the Michelin Star-rated The Spotted Pig, to name just a few. She’s brought a couple of signature dishes with her (like the Coconut Crème Caramel with pineapple granite, which she once served to Julia Child) and a creative sensibility that fits the city perfectly.

But she almost never served the venerable Ms. Child, or made it here, given her studies of journalism and advertising in college. Fortunately for taste buds everywhere, an internship convinced her that office life didn’t hold a candle to the kitchen. “I’ve always been at ease in the kitchen,” she says. “Professional kitchens have a tendency to accept individuals of a quirky nature with open arms, as long as you put the work in.”

See Executive Chef Spence featured in Seattle Magazine's December issue on why she traded in palm trees for evergreens.