Chef: Joshua Skenes
Known for his award-winning restaurants Saison and Angler, Joshua is the first and only American chef to garner three Michelin stars cooking entirely over open flame. He brings a new twist on Angler to Avenue.
The chance to be part of the Avenue team of visionaries that are creating this unique destination was simply too good to pass up.
Playing With Fire With
Chef Joshua Skenes
When your debut restaurant, Saison, wins every accolade and lands on every critic’s world’s best list, what do you do next?
If you’re Joshua Skenes, the first and only American chef to garner three Michelin stars cooking entirely over open fire, you open a decidedly more convivial and fun restaurant that’s not just for special occasions but to enjoy anytime, with family and friends. But you stick to your roots: service that is warm but extremely attentive, a unique methodology that centers around open wood fire, and a long-held belief that the best ingredients come not from wholesale but from the farmers, hunters and fishermen you know by name.
In 2018, the chef debuted Angler in the Embarcadero—voted by Esquire Magazine as the best new restaurant of the year—and now he’s bringing a fresh take on it to Avenue. “After opening Angler in San Francisco and Los Angeles, it made sense for the next destination be in the Pacific Northwest,” says Skenes, who references the incredible bounty available in Washington’s mountains and forests, lakes and waters of the Pacific Ocean.
With an innovative approach to fire cooking and a passion for hunting and fishing, Skenes continuously searches for ways to implement sustainable practices. “Our menu focuses on availability of the best products. And availability changes from day to day,” he says. His commitment to offering a range of fresh oceanic creatures translates to having them delivered live to the kitchen. While most chefs rely on seafood brokers or wholesalers to tell them what’s available, Skenes talks directly to marine farmers and harvesters of wild sea life. “There’s so much great sustainable and underutilized products out there,” he says of the ocean right outside his restaurants. “It would be great to convince everyone to just kind of change their practices a little bit.”
At his Avenue restaurant, Skenes will continue to experiment with local ingredients to bring an elevated dining experience unlike any other in the area. He says that what attracted him to Avenue was not only the ideal location right in the heart of downtown Bellevue but also the opportunity to be part of something that will push the urban energy to a new level. “The chance to be part of the Avenue team of visionaries that are creating this unique destination was simply too good to pass up,” says Skenes.