Everything is bigger in Texas and Chef Otto's heart is as big as Texas with a smile as wide as the Rio Grande. Born to be a Chef, he was raised in the Buckeye State and left Ohio to volunteer for the USN Submarine Service. Stationed in Pearl Harbor onboard the USS Patrick Henry he cooked, serving the men who served their country. After a trekking the Pacific Northwest including a summer as a Baker on an offshore oil rig in the Gulf of Alaska he went east to bite the Big Apple and devoured it for 10 years completing his apprenticeship at the Pierre Hotel and cutting his teeth at the Gotham, Le Bernadin, and was the personal Chef to Leona Helmsley.
With a battle cry of “Have knives will travel” he is an International Culinary Ambassador breaking bread with friends not yet met and falling in love with unknown lands. Travel, adventure and spreading the gospel of all things food is at the core of his spirit. Having explored nearly 30 countries on 5 continents his personal goal is to visit 100 countries before departing to the definitive destination.
He was the catalyst behind Childhood Hunger Day in Washington DC. Responsible for organizing Chefs from across America converging on Capitol Hill for a 3 day symposium on hunger and poverty legislation with members of the House & Senate. His role as a contestant on Bravos Emmy Award winning Top Chef provides notoriety as he continues to be a Champion against hunger. He has worked in such world renowned establishments as the Bellagio, Charlie Trotters, the Atlantis and Mardan Palace. His innate teaching skills landed him a job at the Culinary Institute of America. Texas is the 14th state he has called home. His gastronomic globetrotting has blessed him to cook for Presidents, Kings, Queens, Rock & Roll Royalty, Moguls, Mavericks, Movie Stars, and World Class Athletes, yet, his biggest thrill remains catering his 25th high school reunion. With hair too high for a ten gallon hat and yet to buy his first pair of cowboy boots he is digging his heels in the Lone Star landscape as an adopted son. Chef Otto is the author of the upcoming book, Taste the Freedom!