Cellar curator and Service leader Jesse Abend has worked his way up over a dozen years, from breakfast server to his present position. Along the way, he developed a personal pride, not only for the fine food and wine we offer but for all the special touches that make for exceptional service. He is at home welcoming Russian River locals or providing wine pairing advise to the most demanding and sophisticated guests. He has become the very definition of a knowledgeable host yet maintains a warm and down to earth personality. “We are truly community-based in everything we do. Guests can tell the difference. And they come back because we are not pretentious about it.” Abend feels his job is really very simple - provide the most attentive service and make everyone feel welcomed, at every table, every time.
A west coast native, Chef Jamil Peden spent his early career cooking in Santa Cruz, Seattle, and the Napa Valley. A sous chef position at The Madrona Manor in Healdsburg lured him to beautiful Sonoma County where he gained the upmost respect for our local ingredients, and more refined techniques.
After one year in Las Vegas as sous chef for Wolfgang Puck and three years waiting tables gaining service and wine knowledge he returned to Sonoma County to re-focus. He landed as chef de cuisine at Syrah bistro and then Petite Syrah where the team received a 3 Star review from the SF Chronicle. A period at Scopa and a co-chef role at Campo Fina was also met with rave reviews.
After a bit of personal chef work and an appearance on Chef Wanted on the Food Network he was hired as the opening chef at Woodfour Brewing Company, garnering a perfect food review from the Press Democrat and Best New Restaurant from the Bohemian. Realizing that being a chef in a brewery was limiting he left to seek a better fit.
The position of Executive Chef at Applewood Inn will allow Jamil the opportunity to further refine his personal style and continue to utilize the bounty of West Sonoma County.
He resides in Santa Rosa with his girlfriend and their furry baby Huey.