MEET THE CHEFS
CHEF LORI HASHIMOTO
Lori Hashimoto is a chef and co-owner of Hana Japanese Eatery, an award-winning, family-operated restaurant serving traditional, home-style Japanese cuisine. Since it opened in 2007, Hana has garnered “Best Sushi” and “Best Japanese Restaurant” awards multiple times by every major media outlet in Phoenix. Hana is on the national radar, too, having been named one of the country’s top 20 Japanese restaurants by Travel & Leisure magazine and a top 10 Arizona restaurant by Zagat.
CHEF OSCAR PADILLA
A Los Angeles native, Chef Oscar Padilla developed a passion for food growing up with his grandparents and sharing meals around their kitchen table. Prior to his role as Executive Chef at Toro Denver, Padilla was a culinary trainer for Richard Sandoval Hospitality, opening more than 15 new restaurants in the United States, Dubai, Qatar, Mexico and Costa Rica. With a heart for training aspiring chefs, Padilla’s kitchen philosophy is to practice humility and to never be shy with the salt.
CHEF CHARLEEN BADMAN
As chef and co-owner of the award-winning FnB restaurant in Scottsdale, Charleen Badman is one of Arizona’s most celebrated chefs. A James Beard winner for Best Chef of the Southwest 2019, Charleen is known as the “veggie whisperer” for her ability to coax the very best flavor out of locally grown vegetables, which are featured prominently – although not exclusively – on the FnB menu. Her unfussy, yet boldly flavored menu changes seasonally, and sometimes even week-to-week.
Beverage Manager of Clayton Members Club & Hotel, Bobkowski developed the Five Nines drink menu. Having worked in everything from bagel shops to a distillery to hotels, working with whiskey bars, cocktail bars, and a few food trucks along the way, eventually Bobkowski was lead to the Beverage Manager position at Clayton Members Club & Hotel.
CHEF AARON WHITCOMB
Chef Whitcomb joined the Narrative team as the Executive Chef in March of 2022. He was born and raised in Colorado, but has had the opportunity to live in Chicago, Monterey Bay, Raleigh, and Phoenix. His heart always brings him back home to Colorado. He is an avid foodie and loves exploring the Denver restaurant scene.
CHEF BRENDALEE VIALPANDO
Born and raised in a small town in Northern New Mexico, Chef Brendalee Vialpando owes her passion for cooking and hospitable nature to her close-knit family who spent most of their time in the kitchen creating memories that are cherished today. After finishing culinary school in Los Angeles, CA Vialpando worked with Kazuto Matsusaka before moving to Las Vegas to work for chef of the century Joel Robuchon and spent three years with Julian Serrano.
A lifetime wine enthusiast and current student at UC Davis' world-class winemaking program, Chad is finally pursuing his passion as the on-site winemaker at Bigsby's Folly, learning "hands on" the art and science of winemaking under Brian's leadership. Chad is the owner of 3 patents and is currently earning his Certificate in Winemaking through the internationally acclaimed UC Davis Extension Program.
While in college Brian managed a wine store to make ends meet, ultimately falling in love with wine. For the next five years he sold wine retail and also as a distributor for several famous French wineries. Brian decided to move to France to learn how to make wine in 1995. He attended the University of Bordeaux while working at several small Chateaux in Bordeaux and Burgundy. While still living in France, Brian attended the Wine and Spirits Educational Trust in London flying back and forth for classes.
CHEF "LUIS" JOSE VALDIVIA
For Chef “Luis” Jose Valdivia, family is at the heart of his love for cooking. He first learned to cook from his family, who gathered in the kitchen in Jalisco, Mexico, where he grew up. Luis immigrated to the Rocky Mountains nearly 20 years ago to pursue a better life for himself and his family. Chef Luis is a proud leader in the kitchen, working to bolster Urban Egg’s family-first and locally minded values.