Knowledge of beef cuts – if you don’t know the cut, you can’t cook it properly.

When did you know you wanted to pursue a career as a chef?

As a young girl, I spent hours watching TV food shows. I knew at a young age I wanted to pursue some kind of culinary career, but I wasn’t exactly sure in what way. At the time, I had no idea I’d blaze my own trail as a meat-mastering woman in the kitchen, and that someday I’d get to appear on the types of shows I used to devour.


How have your experiences with food media shaped your career?

One of my first jobs out of culinary school was working as a food stylist for major clients in Hollywood. That helped open a door for me to appear on food shows like FOX’s “MasterChef,” and later, Food Network’s “Cutthroat Kitchen” and “Chopped Grilled Masters Napa.” Whether it’s through a media appearance, via social media or in person, I’m passionate about sharing food stories and working with others who are equally ardent.

A side towel is an extension of a chef’s hand. Ashley can’t function in the kitchen without one.

Chef Ashley Breneman, the lead chef at The Culinary Center, makes sure guests enjoy an unforgettable culinary experience during their visits. Naturally, beef is the cornerstone of every menu – a fun challenge for this Le Cordon Bleu Culinary College grad to explore and express new ideas, complementary flavors and cutting-edge presentations every day.

Despite lots and lots of practice, Ashley relies on an internal-read thermometer to ensure cuts are cooked properly.