Rising Star Chef Joe Ritchie of Goldfinch Tavern at Four Seasons Seattle - Biography

Seattle, WA

November 2015

Raised in Washington State’s Snoqualmie Valley, Joe Ritchie understood early on the connection between the farms, dairies, and rivers around him and the food he ate. He eventually stepped into a professional kitchen in high school, but only to fuel a snowboarding habit. Whether seeking direction, discipline, or something else entirely, he later joined the army infantry, and upon his return, enrolled in the Scottsdale Culinary Institute.

With energy to burn, he took on an internship at Jerry Traunfeld’s The Herbfarm. He then moved to Colorado to take over as executive chef at Grouse Mountain Grill, and returned home a few years later as executive chef of Cave B Inn. Ritchie was reunited with Traunfeld at Poppy, and while working there kept a garden, berry patch, and chickens at his home in Vashon. Inspired by that experience, Ritchie took to two-Michelin starred Cyrus before coming back to reopen Ray’s Boathouse.

It was at Mkt. where Ritchie began to make his mark, developing a style that fused his connection to ingredients with graceful simplicity. He’s sharing this style now at Goldfinch Tavern at the Four Seasons, only on a much larger scale. He’s making the hotel a focal point for fine dining in Seattle and a national model for hotel food and beverage programs.