Chef Jack Gilmore of Jack Allen's Kitchen - Biography

Austin, TX

March 2012

With his bushy mane and broad grin—and his penchant for charity events and incredibly strong cooking—Chef Jack Gilmore is one of the most recognized faces in the Austin culinary scene. Heck, make that Austin, period.

After twenty years of running the pass as executive chef at the Z’Tejas restaurant chain—which he said at the time had become “too corporate”—Gilmore decided to strike out on his own, opening Jack Allen’s Kitchen in late 2009. In a market that tries to focus on sustainability and locally sourced produce, Jack Allen’s still stands above most, with 80 percent of its product coming from local farms, a feat Gilmore accomplished in the first few months of the restaurant’s opening. When he has not room on the menu for a fresh tomato or peach, Gilmore pickles or jams it, which has kept him at the forefront of the Tex-Next food movement.

That kind of attitude has also spilled into Gilmore’s charity work. His “work here, give here” philosophy has led him to many philanthropic ventures, including cooking for local firefighters and Red Cross workers, to demonstrating to children the benefits of locally sourced produce.