Traci Des Jardins

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Traci Des Jardins
Traci Des Jardins and Gary Danko in 2009.jpg
Traci Des Jardins with Gary Danko in the background
Culinary career

Traci Des Jardins is an American chef and restaurateur who owns Jardinière, a French influenced California fine-dining restaurant in the Hayes Valley neighborhood of San Francisco, California. She is also chef/partner of Public House, a sports pub serving local, sustainable classic pub food near AT&T Park in San Francisco;[1] chef/owner of Mijita, a taquería located in the San Francisco Ferry Building and at AT&T Park;[2] and chef/partner of The Commissary, Arguello, and Transit Cafe - all located in the Presidio of San Francisco.[3]


Des Jardins was raised on a farm in Firebaugh, California, near Fresno. Her father is of French Acadian descent, and her mother’s family is from the Mexican state of Sonora. Her maternal grandparents, Angela and Miguel Salazar, lived in a small house nearby, and Des Jardins has many strong childhood memories of her grandmother preparing flour tortillas.[4] The Des Jardins' dinner table featured produce from the garden and game from the land in dishes which reflected her family's Mexican and Louisianan-French Acadian heritage.

Des Jardins apprenticed at several three-star French restaurants, including La Maison Troisgros, and was executive chef at Joachim Splichal's Patina in Los Angeles.[4] Later, she worked at notable San Francisco restaurants Aqua, Elka, and Rubicon before opening Jardinière in 1997.[5]


Des Jardins (left) with Karen Ross, J. Stacey Sullivan, Policy Director of Sustainable Conservation, and Joy Sterling, CEO of Iron Horse Vineyards in 2017

Des Jardins uses locally sourced, organic, seasonal ingredients whenever possible, and prefers sourcing from smaller, sustainable farming and ranching operations.[6]


In 2007, Des Jardins won the James Beard Foundation Award for best chef in the Pacific region. In 1995, she was named the James Beard Foundation's "Rising Star Chef of the Year." She has won Food & Wine's "Best New Chef," and San Francisco magazine's “Chef of the Year” awards. Jardinière was named Esquire magazine's "Best New Restaurant," which was also nominated as a "Best New Restaurant" by the James Beard Foundation.[citation needed]

Television appearances[edit]

Traci Des Jardins competed on season 3 of Top Chef: Masters, which debuted April 6, 2011; she was a runner-up. She also appeared on an episode of Iron Chef America in 2005, in which she defeated Mario Batali.[7] Later, she competed in The Next Iron Chef but was eliminated in the first episode.[8]

Traci Des Jardins was also a judge on season 18 of Hell's Kitchen during a challenge in episode 4.

Traci Des Jardins has also appeared as a judge on Guy's Grocery Games - $12 Meal Showdown.


  1. ^ "Traci des Jardins". Public House. 2010. Retrieved 2011-06-02.
  2. ^ Severson, Kim (2005-06-22). "THE CHEF: TRACI DES JARDINS; A Comforting Breakfast Starts With Salsa". New York Times. The New York Times Company. Retrieved 2011-06-02.
  3. ^ "Traci Des Jardins Opens the Commissary This Week". Inside Scoop SF. Retrieved 2014-05-19.
  4. ^ a b Severson, Kim (2005-05-25). "THE CHEF: TRACI DES JARDINS; Tortillas Let a Cook Come Home Again". New York Times. The New York Times Company. Retrieved 2011-06-02.
  5. ^ Severson, Kim (2005-06-08). "THE CHEF: Traci Des Jardins; Listening for the Wisdom of the Carrot". New York Times. The New York Times Company. Retrieved 2011-06-02.
  6. ^ Severson, Kim (2005-07-06). "THE CHEF: TRACI DES JARDINS; A Steak Brought Up Well, Please". New York Times. The New York Times Company. Retrieved 2011-06-02.
  7. ^ Ganahl, Jane (August 12, 2005). "S.F. crowd cheers on chef Traci Des Jardins as 'Iron Chef' airs on big screen at Jardiniere". San Francisco Chronicle. Hearst Corporation. Retrieved 2011-06-02.
  8. ^ Lee, Cindy (2007-10-10). "What's New: Traci Des Jardins off 'Next Iron Chef'". Hearst Corporation. Retrieved 2011-06-02.

External links[edit]