Chef Bettina Clair of Blue Hill Tavern - Biography

Brewers Hill, MD

September 2011

Bettina Clair was raised in the lush wine county of Northern California, and she spent her childhood in the kitchen of her family home, where her mother and grandmothers cooked from scratch, often with fruits and vegetables grown in the family garden. Spending her summers baking cookies and strawberry pies, Clair also often made pantry gifts for family and friends, such as jams and infused vinegars.

With such an idyllic culinary upbringing, it’s no surprise that by high school, Clair knew she wanted a career in the kitchen. But her parents asked her to pursue a traditional university education first and then go to culinary school, so after high school, Clair shipped out to the University of Puget Sound in Tacoma, Washington, to pursue something more conventional. But her call to the kitchen life was strong. By March 2003, Clair found herself graduating from the specialty desserts and breads program form Seattle Central Community College with a certificate in the crafts.

A couple of months later, Clair moved to Baltimore, Maryland, with her husband. Since moving to the East Coast, the now thoroughly pastry-fied Clair has worked for Bonjour Bakery, Brasserie Tatin, Linwood’s, and The Bicycle. She joined the team of Blue Hill Tavern for their opening in July 2009 as the executive pastry chef.

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