Husband and wife team, Andrew and Kristin Wood, have been working toward their vision of Philadelphia restaurant, Russet, for their collective careers. Andrew began his culinary journey at L’Academie de Cuisine in Gaithersburg, Maryland, followed by a post at Le Bec-Fin in Philadelphia. His next step took him to Boston to work under Michael Schlow at Radius, where he met his future wife and pastry chef. Kristin had recently graduated from the pastry program at the California Culinary Academy in San Francisco and was eager to make a career of her passion for sweets and baking.
The couple soon relocated to Chicago, where Kristin worked on Grant Achatz’s team at Trio and Andrew cooked at Tru. And after having studied in some of America’s top modernist kitchens, the Woods immersed themselves in the opposite side of the culinary spectrum. Moving west, they settled in farm-to-table mecca, Napa Valley, where Kristin worked at Dean & Deluca, and Andrew, Terra under Chef Hiro Sone. The Woods then moved to posts at Quince in San Francisco, solidifying their commitment to sustainability and local sourcing.
Though West Coast cooking had grown to define them, the Woods felt a pull back to the East Coast and family. And Philadelphia was a natural spot to call home with the agricultural bounty of nearby Lancaster County. Before opening Russet, Andrew worked at Maia, James, and Fork; Kristin served as James’s pastry chef. In early 2012, the couple opened BYOB Russet in a restored 1800s townhouse. Sourcing almost exclusively from local farms, practicing whole animal butchery, and preparing to build an apiary in the spring, the Woods are making good food and good stewardship their inseparable mission.
Interview with 2013 Philadelphia Rising Star Sustainability Chefs Andrew Wood & Kristin Wood