Culinary Manager

Justin Balmes

Associate Degree in Culinary Arts (Art Institute of Atlanta 2003)
Serve Safe Manager Certification
Roman Style Pizza Making Certification

Justin’s culinary journey began at the age of 8, when he learned to make food as diverse as donuts and omelets to fresh pasta alongside his grandmother. But it wasn’t until the age of 20 that he took cooking seriously as a profession and began working in a formal kitchen with a classical brigade system. There he caught the attention of the executive chef, gained a mentor, and spent 3 years honing his craft before entering the International Culinary School at the Art Institute of Atlanta. At culinary school he was honored with the Hope Scholarship, placement on the Dean’s List, and graduated with honors and a “Success Stories” plaque featuring his industry accomplishments. Upon graduation, he dove headfirst into the industry to gain full and well-rounded training.

For Justin, food is not only a career, but a creative outlet. He is always experimenting, playing with bold flavors, colors, textures, and temperatures, and follows his instincts with changing seasons and moods. It is the fast-paced comradery of restaurant life that excites him, and he lives by this simple motto: life is too short for mediocre food.

Justin has been featured on national television multiple times, including being cast on both “Food Network Star” Season 7 and “Chopped All Stars.” In his current role at Rich’s, he continues to embrace his life’s passion, cherish his cast iron pot and pan collection, and harbor mixed feelings towards brussel sprouts. Above all, he is grateful for the family and friends who have seen him through life’s hurdles, and is proud that he has been able to experience his achievements and successes alongside them.

Justin's Favorite Rich's Products

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