Frank and Jeanne Cretella of Landmark Hospitality are pleased to announce the engagement of Chef Christopher Albrecht as the Executive Chef of the iconic Ryland Inn, in Whitehouse Station,NJ.
After graduating from the Culinary Institute of America in ’96, Albrecht honed his craft at the acclaimed Gramercy Tavern for 6 years with James Beard Award Winning Chef Tom Colicchio and Pastry Chef, Claudia Fleming. From there he opened Colicchio’s Craft before moving west to helm Craftsteak Las Vegas. Returning to open Craftsteak New York, Chef Albrecht completed a 12 year run with the “Top Chef.” Digging into the Garden State, Albrecht then operated Eno Terra and Canal Farm for seven years where he garnered a serious crop of awards and stars. Looking to make an impact outside the Garden State, Albrecht relocated to the Washington DC area to work with the Farmers Restaurant Group. Upon his return to NJ, Chris teamed with a former colleague to relaunch the legendary Park and Orchard Restaurant in East Rutherford, and the stars kept coming. Chef Albrecht has an abiding passion for all things food and food ethics, and is greatly interested about the future of our food. He has been instrumental in numerous educational programs, most notably in Princeton NJ where he has worked with many children to demonstrate “Garden State on your Plate,” a program committed to getting NJ food onto our children’s plates. As Albrecht’s farming and food awareness increased, a common theme developed: food that is nutritionally dense is naturally flavorful and as such FOOD is MEDICINE.
“Food and farming are inseparable, farming is the source of the most basic building blocks of our bodies and is synonymous with flavor. I’m excited to come to the Ryland Inn, a property that has maintained a tradition of fine food and farming, and be a contributing voice to that story.”
As a professional chef Mr. Albrecht has brought together a community of chefs, farmers and diners for decades. From continuing education classes at the Princeton Adult School, to a TED talk, and countless Farm to Table Dinners throughout the state, Chef Albrecht’s passion for all things food is remarkable. Chef Albrecht is committed to engaging the immediate community of Hunterdon County and the greater central Jersey area in the ongoing discussion of the Future of Food. The storied Ryland Inn kitchen and access to the onsite kitchen gardens and future hydroponic farm will be the focal point for this exploration and where Chef Albrecht looks forward to hosting the community in a shared culinary journey. Chris is also excited about the growth of the Ryland Inn property with the addition of new Inn Rooms as well as a second wedding and event space based on the properties historic barns that are currently being transformed and expected to open to public mid-2017. Chef Albrecht will be replacing Chef Craig Polignano who leaves us to continue his culinary journey at a new location of Mistral to be opened in the King of Prussia Mall where he will work alongside Chef Scott Anderson, another Ryland Inn Alum.