Chef Matthew Kirkley - Biography

June 2016

Baltimore-born Chef Matthew Kirkley spent his childhood crab fishing off the docks of Chesapeake Bay with his father. So began an intimate, ever-growing relationship with the sea and all its bounty. After graduating from the Culinary Institute of America, Kirkley set out for Chicago, where he worked at Seasons Restaurant at The Four Seasons, and Park Hyatt’s NoMI. After staging in Europe at the Fat Duck, Le Gavroche, and Le Meurice, he joined Las Vegas’ Restaurant Joël Robuchon as sous chef. In 2008, Kirkley returned to Chicago to open L2O and later Ria. He then rejoined the L2O as chef/partner in 2011, earning the restaurant two Michelin stars for three consecutive years. Following Chef Daniel Patterson’s departure, Kirkley moved west to take the helm of COI in San Francisco, where he prepares seafood with the care and respect forged on those childhood docks.