2019 Rising Star Chef Gabrielle Maeda of State Bird Provisions

2019 Rising Star Chef Gabrielle Maeda of State Bird Provisions

Gabrielle Maeda, a native of Honolulu, Hawaii, was 14 when she made up her mind. Maeda quit karate and band, started bussing tables at Japanese mom-and-pop spot Sekiya’s and, by 16, transferred to an online charter school. She would complete all her assignments on Monday so the rest of her week was open to work garde manger and fry stations at Hiroshi Eurasion Tapas, learning the ropes under Chef Hiroshi Fukui of Yokohama, Japan. Just two months shy of her 18th birthday, Maeda was ready to navigate the industry on her own, and set out for San Francisco’s California Culinary Academy. She was going to be a chef. 

An externship at Gary Danko turned into a formative five years. Maeda left Gary Danko to embark on a two month adventure with her girlfriend in Southeast Asian, where her mind and palate were opened and inspired. When she returned in the latter half of 2014, her next endeavour landed her at State Bird Provisions under the guidance of mentor Stuart Brioza, to whom Maeda credits with teaching her to taste more deeply and the importance of building strong relationships. Having just turned 26 in November 2016, Maeda was tapped by Brioza to be chef  de cuisine of State Bird Provisions, where she commands the kitchen and imbues the menu with flavors from her Honolulu home and inspiration from her Southeast Asian travels. In June 2019, Maeda is set to marry and will take another brief hiatus to travel.