A Florida native, Chris Ford graduated from the Le Cordon Bleu Program at the Orlando Culinary Academy in 2005. Following his graduation, Ford was offered his first job by Norman Van Aken as Pastry Cook at Norman’s within The Ritz-Carlton Orlando where he learned the fundamentals of a fine dining kitchen under executive chef Clay Miller. After two years at the Ritz-Carlton, Chef Chika Tillman hired Ford as the Sous Chef of New York City’s acclaimed dessert bar ChikaLicious.
In 2009, Ford re-connected with Chef Clay Miller, former Executive Chef at Norman’s, who was opening Trummer’s on Main at the Clifton Hotel in Virginia. With Ford as Pastry Chef, the restaurant received great critical acclaim, from publications such as Food & Wine and Ford himself was named one of StarChef’s “Rising Stars” in the DC Area. The team behind the restaurant was credited for giving the historical destination a culinary revival.
In 2011 Ford joined Michael Mina’s reputable team and The Four Seasons brand as executive pastry chef of the new hotel in the burgeoning Harbor East neighborhood in Baltimore. He enjoyed the multifaceted outlets as he oversaw Wit & Wisdom, PABU and LAMILL coffee boutique's pastry programs. Ford received Food & Wine’s “People’s Best New Pastry Chef of 2012” Award, Tasting Table's "Best Chef 2012" and was named "Baltimore's Best Pastry Chef" by Baltimore magazine.
After two years in Baltimore, Ford departed for Bouchon Beverly Hills in Los Angeles, California. He was drawn by the opportunity to work with Thomas Keller – a long professional and personal goal. It was there that he was named one of Zagat's "30 Under 30" of Los Angeles. After a year, another opportunity called Ford back east to become corporate pastry chef for Bryan Voltaggio, a runner-up on Top Chef whose operation now counts nine restaurants in and around the Nation’s Capital. Alas, though, it was not the right fit. “I helped open three restaurants and restructure the corporate program. It was a great experience, but I missed working with one team.”
Ford returned to the Four Seasons and Los Angeles in October 2015 to take over as executive pastry chef of The Beverly Wilshire, A Four Seasons Hotel. He continues to use the valuable experiences he has had to create an unforgettable experience at the prestigious hotel.