The Ritz-Carlton, Boston Common, a AAA Five Diamond hotel that offers guests a variety of dining and cocktail options including the award-winning Artisan Bistro and Avery Bar, recently announced that Robert Bruce has been appointed the hotel’s new executive chef. In this role, Chef Robert will oversee all of the hotel’s food and beverage programming including menu creation and execution for some of Boston’s most high-profile events, galas and weddings hosted at The Ritz-Carlton, Boston. He’ll also create and implement seasonal menus favoring local farmers and growers for Artisan Bistro and Avery Bar.
“We are thrilled to welcome Chef Robert to The Ritz-Carlton, Boston and look forward to sharing his internationally influenced style of cooking with our guests,” said Tim Terceira, General Manager, The Ritz-Carlton. “His passion and unique culinary inspiration and sense of adventure, not to mention his travels abroad, will bring a new level of creative cuisine to the hotel.”
Most recently, Chef Robert served as Executive Sous Chef at The Ritz-Carlton, St. Thomas for three years where he oversaw all culinary operations for the award-winning resort. Prior to St. Thomas, Chef Robert was the Banquet Chef at The Ritz-Carlton, Dubai from 2012 to 2014. Additional culinary experience with The Ritz-Carlton brand includes working in the kitchens of The Ritz-Carlton, Half Moon Bay from 2006 to 2012 where he was Chef de Partie in Banquets and Garde Manger, prior to his promotion as Garde Manger Chef. Chef Robert began his Ritz-Carlton career with The Ritz-Carlton, Dearborn following his work as Lead Cook at The Country Club of Detroit and Five Lakes Grill in Michigan. Educated at School Craft College in Lavonia, Michigan, Chef Robert holds an Associates Degree in Applied Sciences, Culinary Arts.
Chef Robert’s passion for cooking began early with family parties in his home celebrating a rich Italian heritage where homemade pasta, meatballs and cannolis were often served.
From there, travels throughout the Middle East and Europe expanded his palette while fashioning a global approach to cuisine. Says Bruce, “I was struck by the quality of what you would call street food. From Prague to Istanbul to Dubai, I found that the most incredible food was distinctly local, cooked by the locals. The presentation was far from fancy, but the taste and quality were unforgettable and that’s stayed with me ever since.”
Bruce is a proponent of, in his own words, “simple food done right—perfectly executed dishes with uniquely memorable flavors that highlight a short list of ingredients. You don’t need a million components in a dish. But what you put on the plate should be perfect and it should have a reason for being there.”
Influenced by his mentor Executive Chef Xavier Salomon of The Ritz-Carlton, Half Moon Bay, Chef Robert infuses local flavors into his menus in such a way that diners can experience and enjoy an authentic taste of the local destination. As a recent transplant to Boston, that’s why he looks forward to “working with local farms, dairies, meat and seafood purveyors in order to showcase their local products to Ritz-Carlton guests.” Menu specials, however, are likely to incorporate a bit of Caribbean flair and flavor from his time spent in St. Thomas. The jerk seasoning in the Caribbean is out of this world, he adds, and he would love to incorporate that somehow into dishes featured in Artisan Bistro.
In his leisure time, Chef Robert loves to travel and experience new cultures. He’s also no stranger to the slopes and enjoys every opportunity to ski, so looks forward to skiing the East coast. Chef Robert treasure time spent out of the kitchen with his wife and fourteen-month-old daughter.