OUR CULINARY TEAM

 

MEET THE CHEFS

Alto-Shaam chefs are the go-to for menu development and product education. They support customers through on-site consultations and hands-on demonstrations at tradeshows and events.


Richard “Rocky” Rockwell

Corporate Executive Chef

Chef Rocky has more than 20+ years of foodservice experience working in hotel, country club and college and university industries.  He most recently worked at Texas A&M as an executive chef and director of dining where he served meals to more than 2,600 ROTC cadets in 10 minutes using Alto-Shaam’s plate retherm system.
Chef Rocky joined Alto-Shaam in June 2015 as a corporate chef after spending time with the Alto-Shaam culinary team at the 2015 National Restaurant Association Show.

Chef Rocky is a certified executive chef from the American Culinary Federation where he received an associate’s degree in culinary arts from the Culinary Institute of America.

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Robert Simmelink

Senior Corporate Executive Chef

Chef Robert has 30+ years of experience in the foodservice industry and has held multiple positions in hotels, restaurants and fine dining. Chef Robert first connected with Alto-Shaam during his time in culinary school when he was involved with the National Restaurant Association show.  Robert received his formal chef training at Milwaukee Area Technical College and worked his way through the ranks at restaurants in Wisconsin, Chicago and southern California. Robert was Chef de cuisine at “Bikini” in Santa Monica, which had a fine dining modern global inspired menu. Banqueting experience running a hotel in Los Angeles Korea town as well as a banquet sous chef for Ritz Carlton in Laguna Niguel.

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Ben Leingang

Corporate Executive Chef

Chef Ben has almost 30 years of foodservice experience working in hotel, country club, B&I as well as the Food Equipment sector.  He most recently worked at Henny Penny as the corporate executive chef where he gave culinary and equipment support to strategic accounts and distributors worldwide focusing largely on the QSR market. 

Ben received an associate’s degree in culinary arts from Sullivan University and holds a certification of certified executive chef from the American Culinary Federation.  He joins us fresh in 2020 and looking toward enhancing the customer experience through voice of customer initiatives, new product development, on-site consultations and culinary demonstrations

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Brett Freifeld

Corporate Executive Chef

Chef Brett has 20+ years of experience in the foodservice industry.  Within that period, Chef Brett was involved in roles that included research and design, consulting, management, and food and beverage program development for a variety of companies and restaurants including Kroger Corporation and Hard Rock Café International.

Prior to Alto-Shaam, Chef Brett held a position as corporate executive chef/sales with Bauer Marketing and Sales, where he created demos for clients, participated in tradeshows and worked with customers on creating new menu items.  Chef Brett graduated from Tulane University with a Bachelor of Science then went onto receiving his culinary training from the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, NY.  

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Kristina Bladecki

Corporate Chef

Chef Kristina worked in the healthcare foodservice industry prior to joining Alto-Shaam.
She graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in Business Marketing from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee as a student-athlete.  Two years into working in the office at Alto-Shaam, Chef Kristina decided to further her education and go back to school where she received her Culinary Management degree at Waukesha County Technical College.

Chef Kristina continued to work in the foodservice industry throughout restaurants and country club dining before coming back to Alto-Shaam to work as a sous chef on the Alto-Shaam culinary team.  Within a few years working on the business side of foodservice, Chef Kristina made her way to Corporate Chef.  Kristina is a third-generation Alto-Shaam employee.  Her grandfather, Jerry Maahs, founded Alto-Shaam after inventing Halo Heat Holding & Cook & Hold Technology.

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Isaac Wilde

Corporate Chef

Chef Isaac began working in the foodservice industry in Milwaukee, WI at Hotel Metro where he was the executive sous chef for two years.

He then attended The Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, NY where he completed his formal culinary training receiving an Associate’s Degree. After which, he worked as a line cook at Stein Eriksen Lodge at Deer Valley in Park City, Utah. He then returned to The CIA to complete a Bachelor’s of Business Administration in Food Business Management. Isaac spent time gaining restaurant experience in New York City before returning to Wisconsin to join the Alto-Shaam team.

Isaac joined Alto-Shaam through the company’s extensive internship program. He was then promoted to Sous Chef and then Corporate Chef.

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Brett Freifeld

Corporate Executive Chef Chef Brett has 20+ years of experience in the foodservice industry.  Within that period, Chef Brett was involved in roles that included research and design, consulting, management, and food and beverage program development for a variety of companies and restaurants including Kroger Corporation and Hard Rock Café International. Prior to Alto-Shaam, Chef Brett held a position as corporate executive chef/sales with Bauer Marketing and Sales, where he created demos for clients, participated in tradeshows and worked with customers on creating new menu items.  Chef Brett graduated from Tulane University with a Bachelor of Science then went onto receiving his culinary training from the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, NY.  

Brett Freifeld

Corporate Executive Chef Chef Brett has 20+ years of experience in the foodservice industry.  Within that period, Chef Brett was involved in roles that included research and design, consulting, management, and food and beverage program development for a variety of companies and restaurants including Kroger Corporation and Hard Rock Café International. Prior to Alto-Shaam, Chef Brett held a position as corporate executive chef/sales with Bauer Marketing and Sales, where he created demos for clients, participated in tradeshows and worked with customers on creating new menu items.  Chef Brett graduated from Tulane University with a Bachelor of Science then went onto receiving his culinary training from the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, NY.  

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