2015 Featured Chef: Cullen Campbell
August 10, 2015
Chef Cullen Campbell
Crudo; Okra Steakhouse & Cocktails
Owner and Executive Chef
Chef Cullen Campbell is steeped in the traditions of Southern cooking after growing up on his family cotton farm in Arkansas. Having gained experience in the kitchens of acclaimed eateries throughout metropolitan Phoenix and Memphis, he has satisfied hungry diners with everything from eclectic fusion to Southwest-inspired contemporary and new American cuisine.
Cullen was determined to open his own restaurant as far back as his college days in Memphis, Tennessee. When his time came, sushi caught his interest but had been done and redone so many times it had lost its originality. So Cullen decided to do something different; he chose to focus his creativity on raw foods with Mediterranean flavors. He discovered “crudo” – or “raw” – cuisine and learned its fine points, tweaking and improving as he educated himself.
Since opening in 2012, Crudo Restaurant has won rave reviews from USA Today, the LA Times and Sunset Magazine. Campbell’s refined take on coastal Italian cuisine has been personally lauded by the editor of Saveur and earned him an invite to cook at the James Beard House in New York City. Campbell’s new restaurant, Okra, will open later this year and serve Italian-accented twists on classic Southern dishes, like Tennessee Hot Chicken.
We’re excited to have a creative chef like Cullen cooking for our farmers in Iowa next month!