Strategic Hospitality’s Benjamin and Max Goldberg, the owners behind the Catbird Seat, confirm that Brian Baxter is the new executive chef for the fifth iteration of the restaurant.
A familiar name to many (from his time as Bastion’s Chef de Cuisine with Josh Habiger in 2017), the chef returns to Nashville from Atlanta’s Cold Beer to helm the U-shaped kitchen at the creative incubator. Prior to his time at Bastion, Baxter worked under Sean Brock as Chef de Partie of McCrady’s in Charleston, as well as at Husk Nashville as Chef de Cuisine.
“Sometimes you have to leave something to realize you love it,” said Chef Brian Baxter.“I hoped I would have the opportunity one day to move back to Nashville with my family to be a part of the amazing Nashville restaurant community again.”
Baxter plans to support as many local farmers as possible, while also choosings incredible sources from afar for notable ingredients for a seasonally-focused menu. Whether citrus from California, uni from Japan, or seafood from Greece, at Baxter’s interpretation of The Catbird Seat, the ingredients will dictate the ideas. The Catbird Seat’s interior space will once again evolve with the new chef. To mirror Baxter’s menu, The Catbird Seat space will reflect the menu’s seasonality with a rotating selection of watercolor paintings by Todd Saal.
The Catbird Seat is once again open and taking reservations as of Wednesday, June 17, operating at half capacity with groups seated at least six feet apart. Reservations can be made on the website or through Tock.
Chefs Will Aghajanian and Liz Johnson last helmed the kitchen, earning a James Beard nomination for Rising Star Chefs of the Year during their one year stint beginning in February of 2019. First opened in 2011, the ever-evolving chef incubator and dining experience is a 22-seat counter that provides guests a look at the inner workings of its active kitchen as chefs prepare a tasting menu. Past chefs also included Josh Habiger, Erik Anderson, Trevor Moran, and Ryan Poli.