5 of Boston’s Hautest Female Chefs

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Julia Child paved the way for some of Boston’s best female chefs to make a name for themselves. From finger-licking, stick-to-your-ribs barbecue to buttery lobster popovers and beyond, here’s a look at five of the best female chefs in Boston and their deliciously unique cooking techniques.


1 Barbara Lynch

Barbara Lynch
Barbara Lynch is arguably the best chef in Boston. Her fine dining Fort Point restaurant, Menton, is a Grand Chef Relais & Châteaux property, the first and only one of its kind in the city of Boston. With this distinction, Lynch joined an elite group of chefs in North America and top chefs worldwide who have been awarded the title of Grand Chef, including Daniel Boulud and Thomas Keller. She was the first female Grand Chef in North America, and Menton was the only free-standing Grand Chef restaurant to be inducted in January 2012. Her collection of restaurants include No. 9 Park, Sportello, B&G Oysters, The Butcher Shop, Drink, Menton and Stir.

2 Lydia Shire

Scampo Boston
Nearly 30 years ago, Lydia Shire became a standout chef in Boston when she opened Biba after returning here from Los Angeles where she was the first female chef at the Four Seasons Beverly Hills Hotel. Since then, she went on to transform Biba into Excelsior which later became Bistro du Midi at the Four Seasons Hotel (under different ownership). Today, she can be found in the kitchen at Scampo at The Liberty Hotel near Charles Street where she serves up handmade pasta dishes like spinach gnocchi w/ delicate poached shrimp ‘meat balls’ in a green herb sauce.

3 Tiffani Faison

Tiger Mama
Southern style barbecue is one of Tiffani Faison's specialties at Sweet Cheeks Q near Boston's Fenway Park where she churns out platters of pork belly, pulled chicken, brisket and pork ribs. Her newest venture, Tiger Mama, takes diners on a southeast Asian culinary journey from Malaysia to Vietnam. Faison also came in second place on Bravo’s reality show, Top Chef and participated in Top Chef’s Holiday Special, winning the $20,000 prize.

4 Joanne Chang

Flour Bakery
There isn't much Boston's talented pastry chef/owner of Flour Bakery + Cafe, cookbook author, restaurateur (she co-owns Myers + Chang with husband Christopher Myers) hasn't done. The honors graduate of Harvard College, who has a degree in Applied Mathematics and Economics, made a name for herself in the world of professional baking with her standout sticky caramel and toasted pecan buns, melt-in-your mouth Oreos and fluffy meringue clouds.

5 Jody Adams

Porto Boston
After more than two famed decades at Harvard Square's Rialto restaurant, Jody Adams knew it was time to move on. As the saying goes, when one door closes, another opens and that rings true with Adams' latest venture, Porto, a modern Mediterranean-inspired restaurant in Back Bay. She decided to open the seafood restaurant with partners, Eric Papachristos and Sean Griffing, who she co-owns Trade on Atlantic Avenue and Saloniki, a fast casual concept serving up Greek fare in the Fenway neighborhood.
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