Executive Chef Ralf Schlegel
Ralf Schlegel, a classically-trained chef in French cuisine, hails from Germany and a long line of German hoteliers and restaurateurs. Following ten years of study and apprenticeships, Chef Ralf went on to become a “Staatlich geprüfter Küchenmeister” (kitchen master) and launched his own career. Working at a number of prestigious restaurants and hotels in both Germany and Austria, he quickly assumed chef de cuisine, private chef and executive chef positions. Never missing an opportunity to expand his culinary expertise, Chef Ralf traveled throughout Europe to such countries as Italy, Denmark and Sweden to accept challenging and distinctive catering positions. His curiosity for culinary and cultural experiences eventually brought him to Washington, DC, where he landed at two of the city’s fabled kitchens: Marcel’s and, two years later, The Jefferson. At Plume since 2011, Chef Ralf is highly valued for his creative talents, classic technique, and collaborative nature as Executive Chef. Making use of the finest ingredients and his extensive technical expertise, he presents exquisite cuisine with the advantage of a clear international perspective. Dishes such as a Strip Steak of Prairie Bison accompanied by Corn Soufflé and Baby Corn, a tiny Silver-leafed Roasted Potato, stuffed Cherry Tomatoes with the greens re-applied, and House-made Ketchup with Barbecue Spices; and Wild Salmon poached in Beeswax with Carrot Juice "gélée royale,” are enchanting versions of the familiar.