chef matthew thompson

Meet Chef Matthew Thompson

Chef Matthew Thompson’s expertise in culinary leadership and commitment to crafting sustainable, healthy, delicious recipes makes him an inspiration to us all. From Boy Scout camp cook at age 14 to leading the culinary and sustainability vision of Harvest Table Culinary Group, he’s always found new and exciting ways to share his passion and make an impact on the world around him. We caught up with Chef Matthew Thompson to hear more about his unique perspective as a culinary innovator.

What excites you about the food industry?

tacos
We are amidst an incredible culinary renaissance where we are radically redefining our cultural relationship with food. We haven't seen as a dynamic shift in the food landscape since the mid to late 1950's industrialization of our food system. Ironically, we are fundamentally unraveling these industrialized developments and once more fully engaging clean, wholesome, fresh ingredients. Chef Matthew Thompson

Throughout my time in the hospitality industry, ingredients are not the only transformation. We have fundamentally seen a change in the role of chef. The Executive Chef is the rock star of today, not just a cook proficient in technique and flavor development, but an educator, environmental steward, wellness advocate, leader, scientist, and innovator. I am passionate to be a part of leading our culinary revolution. As a Chef, I am focused on three key fundamentals: ingredient transparency, artisan small-batch preparation, and continuous menu innovation. In fact, it was from this that the Harvest Table Culinary Group was born. What motivates us at Harvest Table couldn’t be more relevant to what is happening in the food industry as a whole. Being on the cutting-edge or the next generation of food is what gets me excited every day.

What do you enjoy most about being a chef?

One piece of literature every chef is familiar with is Escoffier: Le Guide Culinaire, written by Georges Auguste Escoffier, attributed as the father of modern-day gastronomy. Today’s culinary renaissance encourages us to take this opportunity to return to our gastronomic roots by resetting the stage with classical techniques that elevate global ingredients and flavors to continuously innovate and enhance the guest experience.

Harvest Table Culinary Group is proud to embrace the Brigade de Cuisine or traditional French Kitchen Brigade system. Developed by Escoffier, the Kitchen Brigade is a system of hierarchy found in large restaurants and hotels and focuses on delegating responsibilities to different individuals who specialize in specific tasks in the kitchen. We elevate this experience by employing not only skilled, but independently certified chefs.

True success as a chef is not just about being a great cook -it’s more than that. Coming to work every day and leading the team in their own personal growth and development is truly an honor for me. I remember my own personal journey, and regularly attribute my success to the dozens of chefs I’ve had the pleasure of learning from. I strive every day to leave my mark on each member of our kitchen brigade.

What is your favorite dish to cook?

I hear this question all the time! I don’t necessarily have a signature recipe or a go-to dish. Honestly, for me it’s about discovery. I love learning about a dish I’ve never prepared before, experimenting with a new ingredient or technique. Even after twenty years in the kitchen, every day is a new learning experience for me. I guess my favorite dish is the one I’m just learning about today.

See one of Chef Thompson’s signature recipes, the Harvest Grain Bowl, or discover more Food For Thought by visiting his professional blog.

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Instagram post 2192218578089336999_7773517215 The Harvest Table team was out in full-force this week introducing our inspired food experiences to a new campus community. Interested in dining with us? Check the link in our bio! #harvesttablecg #hospitality #inspiredfood
Instagram post 2183057571769106595_7773517215 #Repost @inharvest with @get_repost
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This week The Farmers Market at High Point (N.C.) University served up these gorgeous tacos filled with a 50/50 blend of ground beef and our flavorful and highly nutritious Greenwheat Freekeh (TM), all seasoned with a spice mix produced by Harvest Table Culinary Group. A qualified hit with students! 🌞
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#grains #wholegrain #wholegrains #legumes #lentils #plantbasedfood #plantbasedfoods #plantforward #vegcentric #betterforyou #ancientgrains #foodservice #foodserviceindustry #foodmanufacturing #foodmanufacturers #foodprocessing #retailfood #privatelabelfoods #naturalfoods #foodinnovation #heirloomgrains #foodtrends #foodtrends2019 #foodtrends2020 #HarvestTableCG #HPUDining #tacos #studentdining #freekeh @harvesttablecg @hpudining @chefjayz
Instagram post 2177916935327848348_7773517215 On the heels of the first snowstorm of the season in Upstate New York, our hospitality team is always ready to welcome Guests to the table! #harvesttablecg
Instagram post 2164909731888859412_7773517215 We are proud to announce that we have partnered with @FarmForward, a non-profit organization that implements innovative strategies to promote conscientious food choices, reduce farmed animal suffering, and advance sustainable agriculture, as part of its Leadership Circle. To read the full announcement, click the link in bio.  #htculinary #farmforward
Instagram post 2104597576904160339_7773517215 Harvest Table is attending the American Culinary Federation’s National Convention -the country’s largest and most prestigious professional chef organization. Two of our chefs became certified this year and are being celebrated on this massive wall on the trade show floor. Congratulations again to Chef Jordan Rogers from @deacondining and Chef Christian Froelich from @hpudining for earning the Certified Executive Chef this year. #acfchefs #acfnatcon @acf_chefs
Instagram post 2101048412343316071_7773517215 We are proud to announce a new partnership with @UniversityofRedlands! Join us this year at the Table at Irvine Commons. Our hospitality team @HTRedlands has been preparing all summer for your arrival! #HTCulinary #hospitality #kitchenbrigade
Instagram post 2096644427123523776_7773517215 Today is a beautiful day for al fresco dining! Our catering team is standing by to help you plan your next event. #HTCulinary #catering #freshlyprepared #locallyprocured
Instagram post 2095233694323039697_7773517215 Fresh herbs are in full abundance in our gardens. This basil, besides being antioxidant-rich, tastes delicious! We use basil in many dishes but is most popular in pasta sauces, pesto sandwich spreads, and fresh salads. #HTCulinary #locallyprocured
Instagram post 2093790682813519865_7773517215 Our Chef's Council gets together every month to innovate new recipes and menus. We'd love to hear from you on subjects for our monthly ideation sessions. Please comment! #HTCulinary #ethnicfood #sustainability #napkintalk
Instagram post 2091616333943154340_7773517215 Our kitchen brigade is committed to scratch, small-batch cookery, personalized at the time of service. We look forward to preparing restaurant quality meals. #HTCulinary #freshlyprepared #smallbatch #personalized #kitchenbrigade
Instagram post 2090160013268818005_7773517215 We value your feedback and strive to meet all special dietary needs. #HTCulinary #napkintalk #guestfeedback
Instagram post 2088702111164384836_7773517215 We pride ourselves on menu transparency. All our menu items are available at our kiosk, at the point of service and online for your mobile device -complete with ingredient and allergen information. #HTCulinary #menutransparency #nutritionallybalanced
Instagram post 2086550674199490598_7773517215 The members of our hospitality team are committed to building communities on campus through inspired food experiences. Come join us at the table! #HTCulinary #community #inspiredfoodexperiences #hospitality
Instagram post 2085093355901930845_7773517215 This is the time of year we work with #localfarmers on growing schedules and crop forecasting to ensure we make the most of #seasonalproduce #HTCulinary #locallyprocured #localproduce #supportfarmers
Instagram post 2083593917697166257_7773517215 Our Chef's Council is busy working on new recipes and curating new menus for you! Can't wait to share them with you next semester! #HTCulinary #kitchenbrigade #recipecollection #freshlyprepared
Instagram post 2048123111993152176_7773517215 Did you know our signature #granolabar changes every season? We have new flavors coming your way! Order for your next #catering event, stop by the market or grab one from a #HTCulinary #restaurant near you! #AdditiveFree #FreshlyPrepared #granola #snack #energyonthego
Instagram post 2045103279456742200_7773517215 Our Chief Culinary Officer, Chef Matthew teamed up with Chef Daniel and represented his ACF Chapter at the New England Chef's Showdown this week and won! Check out the details here: http://bit.ly/2HsD1JG #acfchefs
Instagram post 2044415361952157862_7773517215 What better way to celebrate #NationalChocolateChipDay then with a #FreshlyBaked #ChocolateChipCookie? Our #CookieJar is full; stop on by at #HTCulinary restaurant near you! #AdditiveFree #ResponsiblySourced #FreshlyPrepared #Chocolate #cookiesandmilk
Instagram post 2043049592687048461_7773517215 In the vendor spotlight today is our partners at Maple View Farms, supplying our #restaurants in North Carolina with fresh #icecream! #HTCulinary #LocallyProcured Maple View Farm Ice Cream