Meet The Team
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Executive Chef Casey Thompson
Food has played a momentous role in Casey Thompson’s life starting when she was a young girl. As a Texas native, she came from two very different family culinary backgrounds. One was influenced by southern style and the second from heavily influenced French cuisine. It was here that she found cooking to be her calling. Her professional start began as a prep cook at the Mansion on Turtle Creek in Dallas, Texas where she spent hours peeling potatoes, harvesting lobster, making tortillas and tying corn husk bows. This grassroots experience was necessary to achieve the goals she had set in front of her. Station by station, she eventually achieved the title of sous chef under the Southwest culinary Legend, Dean Fearing.
Casey enjoys Seasonally Influenced American food, focusing on sustainable proteins while utilizing fresh, organic, and local produce. She also likes the color Kelly Green because green reminds her of grass, vegetables, and life.
Chef Gunnar Planter
Gunnar joins the culinary team as Banquet Manager for The Inn at Rancho Santa Fe. He handles all wedding and banquet production with ten years’ experience in the culinary industry. He served his apprenticeship in Rancho Santa Fe at Mille Fleurs working his way to the Sous Chef position. Gunnar specializes in French and California regional cuisine. He has a passion for Farm to Table cuisine and enjoys the local San Diego craft beer movement.
Director of Food & Beverage
Michelle oversees all Food & Beverage operations. She has over 15 years in upper management level hospitality and restaurant experience. She spent 8 years with Ladeki Restaurant Group as a Regional Manager, growing the Sammy's Woodfired Pizza local brand. Michelle and her husband moved to the Bay Area where she successfully opened La Boulange de Walnut Creek and served as General Manager for Guy Fieri's restaurant Johnny Garlic's. Upon her return to San Diego, she opened Seasons 52, La Jolla, as the Assistant Managing Partner. Her passion for the hospitality industry and expertise in branding and Food & Beverage operations shines through as she leads her team to deliver our brand of service excellence.
Assistant Restaurant Manager
Blake is responsible for overseeing daily operations in Morada, The Huntsman and in-room dining. In addition, he also manages the beverage program for the restaurant and banquets. Prior to working at The Inn at Rancho Santa Fe, he spent six years at the Rancho Bernardo Inn gaining valuable experiences in all areas of food and beverage. His last two years at Rancho Bernardo Inn were spent as Assistant General Manager of Avant, where he was able to fine-tune his skills as a manager and develop a true passion for food, wine and service.