Chef Kristy Gunn

CHEF KRISTY GUNN
SHUCK OYSTER BAR | SOCO COLLECTION

Shuck Oyster Bar's Head Chef has one simple mission: 
"I just want people to enjoy my food and be happy." 

Good food has inspired Chef Kristy Gunn since her impressionable years as a kid frequenting local Los Angeles restaurants, where she saw the happiness a well-made meal brought people. It is here she decided she wanted to be the one to make the crowd-pleasing dishes that would have people coming back for more. 

While a born and raised LA native, Gunn took to the Orange County restaurant scene to earn her culinary stripes, starting with formal schooling at the Art Institute of Orange County for Culinary Science. Her first career strides took place at Roy's Restaurant in Anaheim, starting from prep and soon after climbing up the line cook ranks, gaining knowledge on the industry, high volume, and the importance of the pride a chef must take in his or her work.

Despite the work load she already carried, the OC newcomer took on additional positions at popular spots like Jason Quinn's Lunchbox by Playground as well as Hopscotch, all to immerse herself in the experience of differing kitchens for a well rounded perspective. This ambition reflects a personal mantra of Gunn's, with the notion that there is always room for improvement and that no matter what you might already know, there will always be something new to learn and master.

From her diverse work experience, there is much that Chef Kristy has taken from each restaurant, but she refers to only a handful of rules in her day to day chef life. Rule No. 1: Never underestimate the power of a tidy kitchen. And Rule No. 2: You should make food that makes people want to go home and make babies. This is particularly fitting at Gunn's newest role as Shuck Oyster Bar's head chef, where she'll bring her signature of classic plates with contemporary flair to the Costa Mesa locale inside SOCO's OC Mix.