Experienced Chef Austin Harmon to Expand Culinary Offerings
Rocky Pond Estate Winery, the up-and-coming Washington producer crafting wines from their beautiful riverside and lakeside estate vineyards, is announcing a major advancement by adding an experienced Chef to develop a cutting-edge culinary program to further elevate and expand their highly regarded wine experiences.
“It is with great pleasure that we welcome Chef Austin to our growing team,” state Owners and Founders David and Michelle Dufenhorst. “This is yet another way that we are elevating Rocky Pond as the Eastern Washington wine destination. The culinary program will be another shining piece of the puzzle and will accentuate the majestic setting, excellent terroir, sustainably farmed vineyards, and distinct wines. Chef Austin’s creativity and experience in fine dining will assist us in fulfilling our mission to create the most memorable wine experiences in the Pacific Northwest.”
By adding Chef Austin to develop and lead the culinary program, the ownership team is looking to take another big step in taking their young wine brand to the next level through a variety of wine and food pairing experiences, wine dinners, and so much more.
Chef Austin is no stranger to the region. He grew up in the picturesque Lake Chelan area and graduated from Chelan High School before bouncing between California and Seattle to chase his culinary dreams. Ultimately, he would land starring roles in some of the top fine dining destinations on the West Coast, including Executive Sous Chef at the Craftsman in Encinitas California, Chef Tournant in Seattle Met’s Restaurant of the Year, Altura Restaurant, and most recently at the Campfire Restaurant in Carlsbad California. He is also no stranger to the world of wine, working at Carruth Cellars in Solana Beach California as the assistant winemaker over multiple vintages.
“I am so excited to be joining the Rocky Pond team as their new Executive Chef,” states Chef Austin. “They have been building an unparalleled paradise in one of the most underrated corners of the Columbia Valley that I have been lucky enough to call home for many years. I am beyond excited to create a culinary program like no other so we can continue to make this area a top travel destination for wine and food lovers not only from Seattle, but from the Pacific Northwest and the entire West Coast.”
The Dufenhorsts with John Ware and Chef Austin have more exciting plans in the pipeline that will be announced very soon. Soon, interested consumers can enjoy wines and a full culinary offering at both of Rocky Pond’s highly adorned tasting lounges located in Lake Chelan and Woodinville, WA in addition to at their winery in Orondo, WA.