Executive Chef/Owner, Bad Bean Baja Grill
After graduating with honors from Johnson & Wales, Rob came to the Outer Banks and did a year cooking at Ocean Boulevard. In search of broader experiences, Rob headed west to San Francisco and began at Michael Minas Aqua in downtown San Francisco, known for contemporary American cuisine routed in the traditional French techniques. Rob then took a position as Sous chef at the Highlands Inn at the Pacific’s Edge Restaurant in Carmel. While in California Rob also work as chef de partie at the French Laundry in Napa Valley as a Chef de Partie under Thomas Keller and in pastries at the Martini House in St. Helena.
After 5 years in California, Rob decided to return to the Outer Banks and accepted the position of Sous Chef at the newly opened Left Bank at the Sanderling Inn. After a year he was promoted to Chef de Cuisine at the Left Bank. He was invited to cook dinner at the James Beard house in New York, and won best new restaurant from Santé, as well as being reviewed by the Washington Post and written up in several prestigious culinary magazines.
Looking for a new challenge Rob started his own restaurant, Bad Bean Taqueria in Corolla in 2006 and then the Bad Bean Baja Grill in KDH was opened in 2010. With him at the Bad Bean is Matt Payne formerly of Left Bank and The Blue Point in Duck. Matt is the chef de Cuisine at the Baja Grill and Rob acts as the Chef owner of both restaurants. The Bad Bean has been featured in Coastal Living, and won best in show and chefs choice last year, and recently won “Best of the Beach” Mexican restaurant 2012 voted on by locals.