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Riah Kuenzi, Executive Chef · Everly

Riah Kuenzi comes from a large family and grew up enjoying cooking for them since he was young. He fell in love with the restaurant industry early on and has been working in fine dining/Haute French Cuisine for more than 20 years. He apprenticed under Master Chef Norbert Brandt in Austin, TX, but mostly he considers himself to be self-taught and industry trained by years of working the grind and crafting his skill. "My favorite part of working in the industry is creating a welcoming space, a community with memorable experiences associated with flavor, aromas, textures and color. Sometimes you can tap into almost primal memories with food that can bring each guest back to a childhood memory or create new fond memories that will be reflected upon after dining with us. I always want to keep people interested and coming back for more." Riah (a Madison native that has been traveling and moving about) and his family recently relocated to Madison after evacuating from the Virgin Islands following all of the destruction from Hurricane Irma in 2017. He is eager to immerse himself and his family into the Madison community and is excited to be a part of the Food Fight family. "Restaurant people are hard working and trained to be solution oriented. They are brilliant people that have found their second families within the walls of the restaurants in which they work. They try to give a sense of joy and community to each and every guest." When Riah isn't working he is spending time with his family exploring Wisconsin. "This was our daughter's first winter, first time seeing snow, and first cold weather for both her and my girlfriend. It's been quite a trip evacuating, relocating and now finally settling in for our Wisconsin adventure. We've already gone ice skating, sledding, and made snow angels and snowmen. It's been quite a whirlwind."