Chef Matt Beckett
Chef Matt’s rise to executive chef at Linn’s Restaurant began with a cooking class he attended with his grandmother at the tender age of 13, where he was deemed “a natural” by the instructor, a French Chef. Motivated by those two little words and no shortage of energy, Matt immediately launched his career with a job in a family-owned restaurant known for its hand tossed pizza.
     Two years later, at age 15, Matt was promoted to restaurant manager. Soon after, his “tossing skills” were noticed and he was offered a kitchen position at a new restaurant the owner was opening, Moines of Newport.
     It was at Moines that Matt was mentored by their head chef and he mastered skills such as sautéing, and decided it was time to head to Cal Poly in San Luis Obispo to attain a degree in food science, and then on to study at the California Culinary Academy in San Francisco.
     Chef Beckett is classically trained in French Cuisine and his past affiliations include the Ritz Carlton at Dana Point, externship mentored by award-winning Chef Christian Rassinoux; Sea Venture Restaurant, executive chef; and San Luis Country Club, executive chef.
     Matt found a home with Linn’s Restaurant of Cambria in 2010. Here, as executive chef, he is able to fully explore his cooking style, which he has dubbed California Coastal with French Cuisine Influences, and is based on seasonally grown, farm-to-table produce, local meats and seafood.
     “It’s the joy of my career to have direct input, based on my menus, as to what is planted and grown at Linn’s farm. Knowing that my recipes will be brought to life in this way is beyond compare!” says Chef Matt. “I mean, what other chef in San Luis Obispo county has the opportunity to offer that to his dining guests? It’s a wonderful connection that sings freshness in everything we serve at Linn’s Restaurant and it’s a dream come true for a chef.”
     He goes on to say that the best part of his job is “being able to be creative using my hands to produce a healthy, fresh, tasty, product that can change peoples’ moods, energy, and attitudes.”
     Matt Beckett is a family man, who with wife Barbara, has 4 daughters ranging from 5 to 21 years of age. He is a an avid wild mushroom forager who has been hunting Chanterelles and Porcini mushrooms, the Queen and King of the Forest, respectively, for over 30 years. “I love the flavor and aroma of the forest that freshly sautéed Chanterelles release,” says Chef Beckett.
     In fact, one of Chef Matt’s own favorite comfort foods is a gourmet, hand-tossed, firewood-baked pizza with exotic toppings such as wild forged mushroom, leeks and chèvre; or, a mango, chicken, barbecue; or, sun-dried tomato pesto and shrimp.
     When asked to reveal a food he doesn’t like, Chef Matt hesitated for a moment, indicating he didn’t want to disparage any food, but then he said thoughtfully, “Plain raw onion. Onions caramelized, pickled, roasted, sautéed - all are delicious, but there is just something about a raw onion that is too bold for me.”
     Raw onion may be too bold for Chef Matt, but his natural talent is the perfect blend of bold and subtle. His dishes are ripe with fresh ingredients and new twists on tradition. His giving nature is right in step with the energetic pace that has honed his culinary skills over the years. All of these have made him a celebrity chef who sincerely cares about making his guests’ dining experience a delight, and his community involvement meaningful.
     In years past, Chef Matt has participated in the Soupabration competition. He took top honors at the 4th Annual Soupabration in Morro Bay winning 3 of 5 categories. The event’s Best of Show Award went to Matt’s entry Tuscan Turkey-Quinoa Meatball Soup. Click here for Chef Beckett’s Best of Show Recipe. This year Chef Matt entered his Triple Chocolate Espresso Mudslide Cookies in the Pastry Competition at Soupabration and was awarded First Place. Get Chef Matt’s recipe for his intensely chocolate and wonderfully fragrant mocha cookies.

    You're invited to visit Linn's Restaurant in Cambria to enjoy Chef Beckett's creative and delicious menu of contemporary comfort foods, fresh daily specials, and holiday menus created expressly to make your celebrations memorable.

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