Joel and Will have been working together off and on since 2010 when they first met at Park Kitchen. They quickly realized they shared similar ideas about food , and went on to open the Bent Brick. Both have been around food their entire lives, and worked in professional kitchens from a young age.

Growing up in Cleveland, Will worked at his dad’s 24 hour diners from the time he was in elementary school, all the way through high school. Since moving to Portland in 2005, he’s worked at Le Pigeon as well as his time at Park Kitchen and The Bent Brick. Before the start of Holdfast, he was traveling on a culinary tour of Europe and Iceland.

As a Portland native, Joel decided he wanted to cook in the sixth grade, and began working at a neighborhood restaurant called JoPa in high school. After graduating the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park and returning to Portland, he worked at Noble Rot and 50 Plates besides the time he worked alongside Will. Most recently he was in Chicago, where he was the sous chef at the two Michelin starred Graham Elliot Restaurant.

Even with the demanding schedule of working in the service industry, both Will and Joel have made time to travel and spend time in restaurants around the world. Between the two of them they have been in the kitchens of: Alinea, Arzak, Dill, The French Laundry, The Herbfarm, Manresa, McCrady’s, Mirazur, Relae, Septime, Ubuntu, and The Willow’s Inn. Holdfast is their way of bringing back what they have learned from those adventures, and sharing it with guests from across the counter.