Logan Stephenson is the new executive chef at SaltRock Southwest Kitchen in Sedona at Kimpton Amara Resort and Spa. Logan’s dedication and natural talent for his craft has led him to a number of opportunities on the West Coast. From making his way to the San Francisco Bay Area to explore ingredient-driven inspiration at Osteria Locanda to developing the pasta program at FiAMMA Trattoria in Phoenix, Logan most recently served as the Chef de Cuisine at Blue Hound Kitchen & Cocktails at Kimpton Hotel Palomar Phoenix. Read more about Logan…
Hometown: Catahoula, Louisiana
First job: Planting sugarcane in the fields of south Louisiana at 10-years-old.
Favorite AZ restaurant: Zinc Bistro as it was my first really fine dining experience. I have tried so many items on the menu there over the years and have always had great meals. Zinc Bistro was also the setting of my first date with the love of my life who has put up with me for the past 13 years.
Person who has impacted your life the most: My parents. I grew up with a very strong family core. My mother was always there and supportive of all my aspirations and my father taught me the ethics and morals that have carried me through the challenges I have faced.
Your biggest accomplishment in your eyes: When I embarked on my culinary journey I set a list of goals, titles to be earned and techniques to be competent in. Thus far, I have met or surpassed all of them and continue to strive daily for new challenges to undertake.
The biggest obstacle you have overcome: The biggest obstacle I have overcome was deciding to move away from everyone and everything I knew, my home and family to travel across the country and become a chef. Now I know that I knew nothing of what that entailed. It has been infinitely harder than what I imagined, but I would not change a single detail.
Someone who inspires you: Karen, my love. For reasons unknown, she has stayed by my side through all of the holidays, birthdays and weeks of simply no days together. What we do as chefs is extremely demanding but I feel even more so on those waiting for anytime leftover that we can share. To have the patience and understanding that it takes to be a part of this kind of relationship is truly inspiring.
Favorite quote: Hardships often prepare ordinary people, for an extraordinary destiny.
Advice to someone pursuing a career path in what you do: Do not hunt money or fame in this industry, integrity in your dishes and respect from your peers is the wealth that your career will be traded in.
What makes someone fabulous: Critical thinking in times of extreme diversity.