Hard work, passion, and persistence are the foundation of Jason Collins’ culinary success story. The new executive pastry chef at Charlie Palmer Steak Napa has spent the past decade climbing the hierarchal culinary ladder, bringing a breadth of experience to the pastry department and overall kitchen of the newly opened restaurant. With a similar, seasonally driven approach to menu development as chef Palmer and executive chef Jeffery Russell, Collins’ desserts at the modern American steakhouse embrace the distinct flavors of the surrounding agricultural and viticultural regions.
Collins’ culinary career began on the savory side of the kitchen, working his way up the line at a variety of restaurants throughout southern and northern California. A graduate of The Culinary Institute of America at Greystone, it was at Farmstead in St. Helena where Collins made the transition from the hot line to pastry. Collins recalls always having an interest and curiosity for the pastry department and when the position became available, it was a classic “right place, right time” opportunity for him. He started as a baker and was later promoted to pastry chef. After three years at Farmstead, he went on to work at Brix Restaurant in Yountville where he lead the pastry department’s menu development and bread production. Collins joins the Charlie Palmer Steak Napa team having most recently worked in the famed Michelin-starred kitchen at La Toque in Napa, where he worked under esteemed Executive Chef, Ken Frank.
When he is not in the kitchen, Collins can be found hiking and exploring northern California with his fiancée, Danielle. A huge ice hockey fan, he also enjoys cheering on his favorite team, the San Jose Sharks.