2018 Talent

Blaine Staniford

Executive Chef, Grace, Little Red Wasp

Born and raised in Texas, Blaine Staniford left his hometown after graduating high school to become one of the youngest chefs ever to graduate from the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, NY at the age of 19 and becoming a rising star in the culinary world ever since.

Following his graduation from the Culinary Institute, Staniford spent two years under the tutelage of James Beard award- winning chef Marcus Samuelsson at Aquavit Restaurant in New York City. In 1998, he joined San Francisco based Aqua and Pisces Restaurant under acclaimed Chef Michael Mina, and in 2003 returned to his hometown of Dallas as the Sous Chef at Lola—The Restaurant. Staniford then moved on to Fuse, gaining him national recognition for his inventive Tex-Asian menu.

In October 2008, Staniford became Executive Chef of a new restaurant in downtown Fort Worth, Grace, featuring a menu with his inventive take on American classics. In 2013, he developed the menu for sister restaurant to Grace, Little Red Wasp, in which he offers an approachable menu featuring local Fort Worth farmers, artisans and Texas beef.

Staniford received the invitation of a lifetime when he was asked to spearhead his own dinner at the renowned James Beard House New York on August 3rd, 2015, solidifying his impression on the culinary landscape. Never one to stay still for long, Staniford participated in the 2015 New York Wine & Food Festival in October and was recently invited to participate in the South Beach Wine & Food festival, as well.

During his career, Staniford has been named “Young Gun” by D Magazine, “Rising Star Chef” by Dallas Morning News, earned the title of “Top Chef, Fort Worth” by Fort Worth Texas Magazine and received a four-star review from the Dallas Morning News.

Staniford resides in Fort Worth with his wife, Dawn, where he continues to introduce diners to innovative and seasonally inspired dishes.