Jason Pfeifer

Years of Participation

Jason Pfeifer is the Executive Chef, Manhatta. Raised in Raleigh, NC., Jason Pfeifer’s fondest childhood memories centered around eating at family reunions in which his grandfather, who was a talented cook, would prepare whole barbecued pigs, hushpuppies, and sweet tea. From a young age, Pfeifer would experiment with flavors and concepts. After hiking the Appalachian Trail from Georgia to Maine at the age of seventeen, Pfeifer landed in Hot Springs, NC at The Sunny Bank Inn where he cooked and maintained an organic farm. Throughout this hike he began studying mushrooms and wild plants, while mastering the art of foraging along the way.

Pfeifer then attended the Culinary Institute of America, during which he completed an externship at Gramercy Tavern before graduating in December of 2006. After graduation, he joined the team at Gramercy Tavern, where he rotated through all of the stations over the course of two years. He then accepted a Chef de Partie position at Thomas Keller’s Per Se, before joining the opening team at Maialino. In the fall of 2011, Pfeifer travelled to Denmark to perform a seasonal apprenticeship and develop recipes with Rene Redzepi and his world-renowned team at Noma. He subsequently returned to Maialino where he was named Executive Chef in January 2016.

In the summer of 2018, Pfeifer begins a new venture with Union Square Hospitality Group as Executive Chef of Manhatta. At Manhatta, he aims to create a dining experience where thoughtful, ingredient-driven fare is housed in a relaxed atmosphere. His New American menu will derive inspiration internationally.

In addition to cooking, Pfeifer is passionate about motorcycling and he enjoys long-distance riding across the country. Outside of the kitchen, he is an avid reader, boxer, and coffee-fanatic.