Culinary News from The Culinary Institute of America

S.F. Chef Matthew Dolan Tells CIA Graduates: It’s About Being Welcoming

St. Helena, CA – Matthew Dolan, executive chef and partner of acclaimed San Francisco restaurants Twenty Five Lusk and Tap (415), was commencement speaker at The Culinary Institute of America at Greystone in St. Helena, CA on September 8. Dolan earned his bachelor’s degree in Culinary Arts Management at the CIA’s New York campus in 2000. Chef Dolan, who served President Obama in 2016 at Twenty Five Lusk, reminded the newest group of fellow alumni that hospitality is “the business of welcoming people.”

“It doesn’t matter if it’s the president or the guy selling strawberries on the corner, we owe them a fantastic experience,” Dolan told recipients of degrees in culinary arts and baking and pastry arts. “With our food, our wine, our welcome, our attention to detail, we wash away the negativity of their lives. We remind them that life is quite beautiful and we really just make people happy.”

The Connecticut native began his culinary career well before enrolling at the CIA. He was dishwasher and fry cook at a casual restaurant in his hometown at age 14. After graduating, Dolan cooked in New York City, New Orleans, Nantucket, and Helsinki, Finland before settling in the Bay Area. He then partnered with CIA classmate Chad Bourdon to open Twenty Five Lusk and Tap (415), with Bourdon serving as general manager of both restaurants.

Twenty Five Lusk was named the best new restaurant in America by Esquire magazine in 2011 and it has been an Open Table Diner’s Choice Top Hot Spot Restaurant since it opened in 2010.

Photo Caption and Hi-Res Image:

Bay area chef Matthew Dolan addresses the graduating class of The Culinary Institute of America at Greystone in St. Helena, CA on September 8, 2017. (Photo credit: Charlie Gesell/CIA)
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Media Contact:

Jeff Levine
Communications Writer

Founded in 1946, The Culinary Institute of America is the world’s premier culinary college. Dedicated to developing leaders in foodservice and hospitality, the independent, not-for-profit CIA offers bachelor’s degrees in management, culinary arts, culinary science, and applied food studies, and associate degrees in either culinary arts or baking and pastry arts. The college also offers executive education through its Food Business School along with certificate programs and courses for professionals and enthusiasts. Its conferences, leadership initiatives, and consulting services have made the CIA the think tank of the food industry and its worldwide network of nearly 50,000 alumni includes innovators in every area of the food business. The CIA has locations in New York, California, Texas, and Singapore

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