Combining a passion for food, thirst for knowledge, and years of experience, Chef Jonathan Blackford brings a unique perspective and commitment to quality to everything that comes out of his kitchen.
Born a Pittsburgh native, Chef Blackford’s culinary journey began at a young age and his training at the Culinary Institute of America led him into the kitchens at Gramercy Tavern, Blue Hill Stone Barns, and Round Hill Country Club. A defining moment for Chef Blackford would come during a six-month externship at The Lodge in Torrey Pines. The thoughtfulness and procurement that went into every ingredient, mixed with precise cooking techniques and an ever-evolving menu, created the foundation and approach to his style. His sophisticated skill set and style led him to be sought after by Hilton Hotels’ Waterfront Beach Resort to serve as Chef de Cuisine for a new restaurant.
It was after several successful years at the Waterfront Resort, that Chef Blackford found himself at the center of the Orange County restaurant scene as Executive Chef at A Restaurant in Newport Beach. His passion and love of ingredients positioned A Restaurant as one of the most iconic, beloved and best restaurants in Orange County year after year. After nearly a decade with the restaurant, he went on to open sister location, CdM Restaurantin Corona del Mar, which quickly found itself on many Best Of lists.
After nearly 25 years of experience and knowledge, Chef Blackford is able to let his passion blossom and create his foothold in the industry that he has grown to love so much, with the introduction of his first new concept, Fork & Knife.