Executive Chef – Roger Lee
Chef Roger Lee is a Californian through and through. Born and raised in the San Gabriel Valley town of Arcadia, CA, he then earned his culinary degree at Le Cordon Bleu in Pasadena. His inspiration for a life of cooking began at home.
“My family always had family dinners that would go for more than 2 hours. Meals became more of an event versus a means of nourishment. This is what made me want to be a chef. I wanted to the make the food that brought families together.”
As with all accomplished chefs, he began his career with the basics, working as a prep cook for a restaurant chain when he was 15 years old. Following graduation, he embarked on his culinary journey by training under chefs Heston Blumenthal of The Fat Duck, Bray, England, Guy Savoy of Restaurant Guy Savoy, Las Vegas, Alessandro Stratta of Restaurant Alex, and Akira Back of Yellowtail Japanese Restaurant and Lounge. Chef Lee built his repertoire and refined his technique in steakhouse fare, Japanese cuisine, and French fine dining. Lee took the opportunity to work under the tutelage of Chef Claude Le Tohic, of Joel Robuchon in Las Vegas, and left his Corporate Executive Chef position with Innovative Dining Group of Los Angeles for the chance to work with him again at Alexander’s Steakhouse. Chef Lee has just been named executive chef at Alexander’s Steakhouse, Cupertino.
Chef Lee’s culinary philosophy is simple. He believes that you should take extra care in everything you do in the kitchen. “Make it nice or make it twice. We have to respect our ingredients in order to produce the best product.”
Making guests smile is his favorite aspect of cooking and he looks to his father as his inspiration and greatest mentor. “From my father, I learned to take pride in everything I do because my work is truly a reflection of myself”.
Chef Lee admits to being ‘married to his work’ but enjoys the occasional trip to the driving range when time permits. He is looking forward to challenging himself by pushing culinary boundaries and making magic in the kitchen at Alexander’s Steakhouse, Cupertino.