Local tasting tour and public cooking class company Eat Seattle Monday announced Chef Wayne Johnson as a new member of their chef team. Johnson was also recently appointed as the new Executive Chef at FareStart and brings with him a wealth of local food knowledge. Johnson will be leading four-times weekly Tasting Food Tours of the world-famous Pike Place Market, offering up his foodie expertise from a 30-plus year-long career in the local food industry.
A Kentucky native, Chef Wayne is actively involved in the Seattle culinary scene and community, currently positioned as the Executive Chef at FareStart in Seattle and part owner in Shuga Jazz Bistro, which opened in 2014. Previously in Seattle he served as Executive Chef at Ray’s Boathouse, Café & Catering, Seattle’s iconic Northwest seafood restaurant and catering company, and the elegant Mayflower Park Hotel where he served as Executive Chef of the award-winning Andaluca Restaurant and Oliver’s Lounge since 1999. Before Seattle, he served as Executive Chef for the prestigious Renaissance Parc 55 Hotel in San Francisco, and the Marriott Hotels and Resorts in California and Colorado.
“We are so excited to have Chef Wayne on the Eat Seattle team,” Eat Seattle founder Liz McCune commented. “The messages of Eat Seattle’s commitment to food education and FareStarts goals of community change go very much hand-in-hand and are a fantastic compliment to each other.”
“Both FareStart and Eat Seattle are all about giving back and about sustainable practices in food – things I am passionate about,” Chef Wayne commented. “I love that we are in this fantastic time where the world is awaking to eating food as close to the source as possible, doing as minimal as possible – less processing and additives. Both are about allowing people to learn farming, fishing and ranching in a sustainable way.”
Chef Wayne has earned many accolades in his 30+ years in the food industry, including being selected as a “Rising Star” by StarChefs.com and Iron Chef America Season 9 Challenger. Chef Wayne has been honored to cook for the James Beard House in New York City on January 14, 2002 and taught a cooking class at the French Culinary Institute. Black Enterprise Magazine also named him one of America’s Top Black Chefs. He gives generously of his time and serves on the boards for Le Cordon Bleu Culinary School, Culinary Wonders USA (CWUSA), UNCF Pacific NW Leadership Council, and the “Food as Art” for the Central District Forum.