The Valley of the Sun has no shortage of high-achieving culinary artists, and these are the Top 5 celebrity chefs in Phoenix you ought to be familiar with if you want to call yourself a foodie.
1 Beau MacMillan
As executive chef of the Sanctuary Camelback Mountain Resort & Spa, including the property's signature restaurant, called elements, Beau MacMillan focuses on simple yet elegant dishes created from fresh, local ingredients. Originally from Massachusetts, he cooked at La Vieille Maison in Boca Raton, Florida, before making the move to Los Angeles to become sous chef first at Hotel Bel Air and then Shutters on the Beach. In 2004, MacMillan was promoted from chef de cuisine to executive chef at the Sanctuary Camelback Mountain Resort. And in 2006, his incredible skills were put to the test when The Food Network invited him to appear on the hit show "Iron Chef America," for an episode in which his Kobe beef dish bested that of Iron Chef Bobby Flay's. MacMillan has appeared thrice on "NBC's Today Show," and he has cooked at The James Beard House and for "Bon Appetit" magazine in New York.
Executive Chef, Sanctuary Camelback Mountain Resort & Spa web
2 Mark Tarbell
Mark Tarbell owns his eponymous restaurant in Phoenix, in addition to two locations of The Oven in Colorado. After studying wine at l'Academie du Vin in Paris and earning a Grande Diplome d'Etude Culinaire from La Varenne Ecole du Cuisine, Tarbell became the food and beverage director at The Boulders Resort in Carefree at the age of just 23, making him the youngest person to hold that position at any Five Diamond property in the world. He has cooked for a long list of well-known individuals, including the Dalai Lama, Muhammad Ali and Clint Eastwood, and he even collaborated with Lance Armstrong's personal trainer on Chris Carmichael's "Fitness Cookbook." He has been nominated for numerous awards, including "Best Chef - Southwest" by the James Beard Foundation, and he and his restaurants have been awarded scores more, including Food & Wine's "Best Restaurant." You may recognize him from his appearances on "Good Morning America," "NBC's Today Show" and The Food Network's "Iron Chef America."
Owner, Tarbell's web
3 Jeremy Pacheco
Jeremy Pacheco is the executive chef at Lon's at The Hermosa, a AAA Four-Diamond restaurant serving "artful American cuisine." Originally from Tucson, Pacheco served as chef de cuisine at both Society Cafe Encore and Wynn's SW Steakhouse in Las Vegas before returning to Arizona to develop the cuisine at Lon's. Additional experience includes posts at the (former) Terrace Dining Room at The Phoenician and at The Last Territory restaurant at the Sheraton El Conquistador in Tucson. Pacheco's awards include the "2008 Vegas Uncorked Bon Appetit Award" (an Iron Chef-like competition among Sin City's finest master chefs), and Lon's has been named one of Phoenix's "Top 5 Restaurants" by "USA Today," as well as the "Most Popular Restaurant in Phoenix" by "Zagat," among other highly acclaimed titles.
Executive Chef, Lon's at the Hermosa web
4 Eddie Matney
Eddie Matney previously co-owned and operated the Stockbridge Cafe in Massachusetts before moving to Phoenix in 1986 to open Steamers, then Eddie's Grill in 1988 and a string of other successful eateries. In 2006, he partnered with then Phoenix Sun Amar'e Stoudemire to open the basketball player's restaurant, called Stoudemire's Downtown, a popular spot in downtown Phoenix, particularly on game nights. Of course, most people associate Matney's name with Eddie's House, which opened in May 2008 in Scottsdale to rave reviews. Matney shares his expertise outside the kitchen as co-host of "Your Life A to Z," which airs weekly on KTVK, and he has also appeared on "The Early Show." His culinary creations have been featured in "Food & Wine," "USA Today," "Bon Appetit" and other prestigious food and wine publications, and he has represented the Arizona Cardinals football team numerous years at the "Taste of the NFL" event. Plus, he is the co-author of the cookbook "Heartfelt Cuisine." Is there anything this guy can't do?
Owner & Executive Chef, Eddie's House web
5 Charles Wiley
Chef Charles Wiley oversees cuisine at the historic Hotel Valley Ho, preparing menus for the Polynesian-themed restaurant Trader Vic's, as well as the hotel's signature Cafe ZuZu. Prior to his post at Hotel Valley Ho, Wiley was the executive chef and director of food and beverage at The Boulders Resort in Carefree for 10 years, then held that same position again at the opening of Sanctuary Camelback Mountain Resort in 2000. That year he was also inducted into the Scottsdale Hall of Fame as a Chef Honoree. His achievements include being named one of "The Ten Best New Chefs in America" by "Food & Wine" magazine as well as one of "America's Best Hotel Chefs" by the James Beard Foundation. He has appeared on "NBC's Today Show," ABC's "Regis & Kelly," and on The Food Network; and his dishes have been spotlighted in such reputable publications as "Bon Appetit," "Food Arts," "Art Culinaire" and others.
Executive Chef, Hotel Valley Ho web