JR’s background consists of graduating from culinary school, studying food for the past 35 years and traveling the world to experience food in new ways. Early in his career, he worked in all areas of restaurants being a Function/Banquet Captain, Sous Chef, Head Saute Cook, Garde Manger, Rounds Cook, Head Chef, Executive Sous Chef and Food & Beverage Manager at companies to include, The Canterbury Hotel in Indianapolis, The Denali National Park Hotel in Alaska, Sugarbush Inn, Edson Hill Manor and Mount Mansfield Company in Vermont. He also ran the food service at Lambeau Field and worked as a contractual Executive Chef for PGA events, major concerts and VIP catering for Spectrum Events out of Houston before opening his first restaurant.
For the past 15 years, JR has created some of the best dining spots in Northeast Wisconsin. Chives Restaurant in Suamico was his first. Since then, he created and opened 8 others, some small operations, some larger, most of them successful and others not so successful but always taking a risk, sticking his neck out, trying new ideas, and loving every minute of it. Each and every idea brought a new learning experience.
His mission is to always keep it simple, always use the freshest ingredients available. Our staff consists of very talented customer oriented people; some who have helped JR develop Chives culinary path from the beginning and some are employees he worked with in previous kitchens. The entire staff at Chives is along for the next ride which makes for a great working environment. Chives would not be what it is today without the talent and dedication of our staff.
As JR evolves, so has his family grown. His 3 children are grown and the grandchildren keep him young. Jessa, his oldest daughter is our head Baker in Fish Creek, baking delicious bread from scratch for both of our Door County locations. Nick, his oldest son and Nick’s wife, Charlotte run our restaurant, RYE, in Appleton. Nick is the Head Chef and Charlotte is the Events Coordinator. Lucas, his youngest son has graduated as a Certified Sommelier and has created for us some spectacular wine lists and works in food & beverage at both of our Door County locations. JR’s wife, Cindy, has dedicated herself to lead the office and bookkeeping departments for all his restaurants.
JR has two restaurants in Door County. Chives In Baileys Harbor and Barringers in Fish Creek. Chives Door County opened in 2014. Looking to start settling a bit, JR and Cindy chose Door County to call home. The building that Chives is located in captures the history of the small town of Baileys Harbor and character throughout. It is the perfect setting for creating dishes utilizing the freshest ingredients available. You will see our chef team planting seeds on the property and picking their vegetables from our very own greenhouse. Chives prides itself on everything made from scratch. From our bread to ice-cream, from our garden of vegetables and local ingredients, we are truly Farm to Table!
Check out his newest hobby….Food Trucks! JR now has two of them. He has our “Farm to Truck” food truck specializing in house-made sausage sandwiches, grilled cheese, salad in a jar and Friday Fish Fry. Our new pizza truck is an original 1945 Ford 1 1/2 ton commercial pick up with an artisanal wood fired oven on the back. We make a variety of pizza, wood oven roasted food and salads from it. You can enjoy food out of either of them at the Door County Brewing Co in Baileys Harbor or special events/caterings in the area. Also, try Barringer’s Restaurant in Fish Creek for a remarkable steak house/supper club experience.
Jessica Morse – Bread Baker
Jessa found her passion for baking several years ago. She worked at Breadsmith and Not By Bread Alone in Green Bay. She has also worked at the Bread Bank in Suamico and various coffee shops as a barista in the Green Bay area. All of our breads are made from scratch daily. Jessa uses a mixture of naturally leavened and lightly yeasted dough to create a diverse selection of variety in crust and crumb.
Jessa lives year-round in Baileys Harbor, loves spending time with her 2 boys, reading and dabbling in home-made bath and body products.
Nick graduated from South East State University of Missouri with a BA degree in Dietetics. After school, he spent time in Michigan and started his career primarily in baking. His passion grew as he researched, analyzed, and tested recipes.
Nick has worked at Ann Arbor Co-op in Michigan, Jolly Pumpkin in Michigan and Rye in Appleton. Today, you will find Nick as our Chef de cuisine at Barringer’s. He enjoys mushroom hunting, learning about food, gardening, woodworking and nature.
Dustin Allen Bronstad
Dustin graduated from NWTC in 2011 with a welding degree and quickly realized his heart was in the hospitality industry. Dustin started with us at Chives in Suamico bussing tables and working events at the Schoolhouse in Vickery Village. Dustin has also worked at Rye in Appleton, Bleu in DePere and A’Bravo Bistro in Green Bay. Dustin enjoys woodworking, hiking, kayaking, “everything Door County” and has a passion for music.
Today, you will find him running front of the house at Barringer’s. He has been with us for 5+ years.
Shawn worked in manufacturing for many years and his family played a major role in developing his love for the food and beverage industry. Over the years, Shawn has worked for several restaurants in Door County and has spent time traveling during the off-season to warmer climates including Costa Rica. He also lived in Slovakia and Romania with his wife, Christina, while she finished school. They have now become the proud parents of Leon born in 2017.
Today, you will find Shawn as our head bartender at Barringer’s in Fish Creek. He enjoys kite-surfing, paddle boarding, nature and maple sugaring.
Sunday 11am – 9pm
Thursday 4pm – 9pm
Friday 4pm – 9pm
Saturday 11am – 9pm
1 North Spruce Street
Fish Creek, WI 54212