Originally from Santa Rosa, California, Rogers has been all over the world honing his craft. Beginning his career in 1999 in South Florida, he worked his way through famed kitchens like The Players Club and the Equestrian Club by Tavern on the Green. In 2010, he was ready for a change of scenery and moved to The Fairmont Hotel in San Francisco before working at the Fairmont Peace Hotel in Shanghai, China, and later opening the Fairmont in Nanjing. Coming back to the states in 2014, Rogers took a position in Massachusetts at Nantucket Island Resorts and then in Montana at Grand Union Hotel before joining The Iron Horse Hotel family in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.
During his culinary career, Rogers has come to believe in honest cooking – not just using sustainable ingredients, but sourcing them with intention. Combining traditional techniques with a contemporary approach, his mantra for crafting popular dishes is straightforward. He says, “I believe that simplicity can be very satisfying and successful.”
Bringin’ It Together
Rogers counts himself lucky for becoming the sous chef of Cheeca Lodge and Spa in Islamorada in the Florida Keys early in his career. At the restaurant, he was able to train under renowned James Beard Award nominated Chef Dean James Max. His time with Chef Max still motivates him to continue to learn and grow. It also showed him how to best run a kitchen – with passion and a calm demeanor. “I aspire to lead by example to show my team that I am with them every step of the way – from each ingredient to every plated dish and all the steps in between,” says Rogers.
Explorer at Heart
When he’s not at The Iron Horse Hotel overseeing all of the property’s food and beverage operations, Rogers loves to travel with his wife Qing Chen. Together, they enjoy dining out and finding inspiration as they explore new cultures and cuisines.