San Diego Chefs

Aaron ThomasThomas

Chef de Cruisne

Growing up in a family where food came from a garden versus a grocery store quickly opened a culinary playground for Chef de Cuisine of AVANT, Aaron Thomas. Influenced by his grandmother and mother, both amazing cooks, Aaron began cooking at age eight and crafting desserts by age 10. His passion soon led him to study culinary arts in the country of Wales, UK.

Time spent learning under Michelin star Chefs Max Renzland and Andrew Hanson in the south of France led him to a culinary leadership role at The Grand Hotel, in Swansea, Wales. During his tenure, Chef Aaron was mentored by Michelin Star Chef, Jacque Abdou, and Chef Aaron worked his way up to Executive Chef at The Grand Hotel, at just 21 years of age.

Chef Jacque Abdou left an everlasting impression on Chef Aaron, teaching him to expect only the highest standards for his menu and staff. In 2010, Aaron transitioned to the Riverside Inn & Grille as Head Chef. During his tenure, The Riverside Inn was voted best gastropub in Wales and Aaron was awarded two AA Rosettes recognizing excellent standards of service, the demonstration of technical service skills and clear commitment to staff training and development. At the time, he was the youngest Chef in Wales to achieve this accolade.

In 2014, Aaron moved stateside to Newport Beach, Calif. to launch Cruisers Pizza Bar & Grill as Executive Chef. During his tenure there, he received local recognition for best restaurant in Orange County.

Having been mentored by renowned Chefs, Chef Aaron Thomas is passionate about making everything from scratch, using the freshest ingredients with state-of-the-art cooking techniques and stresses teamwork in the kitchen to elevate the performance of the entire staff.

Chef Aaron describes his culinary style as modern and traditional. Combining his knowledge of food with a modern twist in flavors and presentation, Chef Aaron’s been able to construct a refreshing update to the menu at AVANT. Taking advantage of southern California’s bounty of fresh produce and meats, he’s able to source the finest ingredients available – a highlight among all of the new menu items.