Executive Chef Christopher Lee joined The Forge in early 2014, bringing with him a rich culinary background that includes experience in some of America’s most iconic restaurants.
Born in Queens and raised on Long Island, Chef Lee is a graduate The California Culinary Academy in San Francisco. He accepted his first restaurant position in 1999 as Garde Manger and Poissonier at The Fifth Floor Restaurant in San Francisco, CA. In 2000, he returned to the East Coast, furthering his career at renowned Manhattan restaurants including Daniel, Jean Georges and Oceana. He became Executive Chef of Philadelphia’s Striped Bass in 2004 before returning to New York as Executive Chef of The Palace Hotel’s Gilt, where he earned two Michelin stars. In 2009, he moved to Charlie Palmer’s Aureole, which also earned a Michelin star during his tenure.
Lee’s accolades throughout his career include a James Beard “Rising Star Chef of the Year” award in 2005, followed by a “2006 Best Chef Mid-Atlantic” nomination. He was garnered Food & Wine’s “Best New Chef” recognition in 2006. In 2009, Lee was a contestant on the inaugural season of Bravo’s “Top Chef Masters.”
In his personal time, he enjoys spending time with his family and perfecting his own Sake brand, Iki. Chef Lee currently resides in Miami with his wife and two children.