Kitchen Confidential

> Story by Meg Daly
> Photography by Latham Jenkins

14-chef-craighead-196

Good kitchen design is an essential aspect of casual, mountain entertaining, especially when a professional chef is behind the wheel. Design a kitchen that works for a chef, and your kitchen will work well for you. Homestead spoke with two of Jackson’s finest private chefs to learn more about their dream kitchen designs.

Jarrett Schwartz in the Craighead home

The wizard behind Nikai, Sudachi, and The Kitchen, Chef Jarrett Schwartz now works exclusively as a private chef. He chose Derek and Sophie Craighead’s home kitchen to highlight exemplary, chef-friendly design. Designed by Stephen Dynia, the home features floor-to-ceiling glass on the main floor, including the kitchen. A stunning view of the Tetons is certainly fodder for Chef Schwartz’s culinary creativity. But it’s the kitchen’s expert features that enable him to work his magic.

“I prefer a functional kitchen that enables me to operate like a chef in a restaurant,” Schwartz says.

Sophie Craighead customized her kitchen from the specialty German kitchen manufacturer Bulthaup. Known for its ergonomic design, Bulthaup suited Craighead’s sensibility.

“We wanted something beautiful and practical,” she says. “And we didn’t want it to be quaint.”

14-chef-craighead-050-2
A big kitchen is no bonus to a chef, says Schwartz. The close proximity of the Craigheads’ sink and stovetop allows him to pivot from prep to pan. Below the sink, a pullout refrigerator and a pullout trash allow for economy of movement.

Schwartz likes the ample, uncluttered, and easy-to-clean countertops with plenty of room for plating.

Adjacent to the main kitchen is a caterer’s kitchen, equipped with sink, refrigerator, and storage that hides any necessary mess or dirty dishes. “I could serve 125 people out of this kitchen,” he says.

14-chef-craighead-128

Tasteful modern components like the roll-front cabinet, hanging bar for utensils, and well-appointed drawers keep countertops free of clutter.

A final key feature is the excellent ventilation system. A metal duct above the stove mimics structural posts elsewhere in the space. When Chef Schwartz presents his ancho chile-rubbed bison tri tip, we inhale only the scent of spices and perfectly cooked meat. Success.

15-maho-chef-100_cmyk

Maho Hakoshima in his home with Peggy Gilday

Chef Maho Hakoshima and his partner, architect Peggy Gilday, practically live in their kitchen. “We spend 75 percent of our time here,” Hakoshima says. The owner of Maho Catering, he is one of the most sought-after chefs in town.

Designed by Gilday, the couple’s east Jackson home feels like an urban loft with big windows, bold angles, clean lines, and contemporary décor. Budget limitations led the couple to choose an Ikea kitchen, which they designed themselves online. The systems-based design means functional, inventive elements that put everything in its right place.

Like Schwartz, the first thing Hakoshima mentions are the countertops. The durable silestone counters around the sink and stove resist staining and make cleaning up a cinch. Perfectly situated cabinets, shelves, and drawers help keep counters clear.

15-maho-chef-074
The maple worktop is easy on knives and easy to clean.

Hakoshima’s main workspace is an industrial worktop, borrowed from his catering shop. When not in use
for meal preparation, it doubles as hangout space for the family.

“I love working on a wood surface because it’s a giant cutting board,” Hakoshima says.

The Gilday/Hakoshima kitchen incorporates other chef-approved components like lights over the sink, and a sink large enough to fit a half-sheet pan.

15-maho-chef-046

A magnetic knife strip keeps knives at hand without clutter. Plus, Hakoshima can select from a visual array.

A convection oven is important, as well as proper ventilation. “With the high-heat searing we do so much of in Jackson,” Hakoshima explains, echoing Schwartz, “a functional hood system is huge.”

Gilday notes that they designed their kitchen to be flexible, allowing for improvisation.

“It’s a blank slate,” Hakoshima says. “Our kitchen gives you room to do what you want to do.”