Cindy Pawlcyn has pioneered fresh, local, seasonal, sustainable wine-country cuisine since opening Napa Valley’s legendary Mustards Grill in 1983. She is the founder/owner of two of Napa Valley’s most beloved restaurants - Mustards Grill and Cindy’s Backstreet Kitchen – and is Culinary Partner at the Monterey Bay Aquarium.
Born in Minneapolis to an accomplished culinary family, “one of my earliest memories is of sitting in the garden with a salt shaker while my dad picked ripe tomatoes,” she says. “I can still taste the fresh, warm fruit seasoned with a dash of salt.” True to her roots, organically-farmed gardens at Mustards and CP's yield impeccable produce for her restaurants.
With a degree in hospitality management from the University of Wisconsin-Stout, training at Le Cordon Bleu and La Varenne in Paris, and experience at some of the Midwest’s finest restaurants, Cindy moved to San Francisco in 1979 and was soon tapped as the inaugural chef for Napa Valley’s Meadowood Resort. Since then, she has partnered in the creation of over a dozen iconic Bay area restaurants including Fog City Diner, Roti and Tra Vigne, as well as her own establishments.
Cindy has earned rave reviews from the most exacting critics, countless national awards, and a devoted following. She is the author of four cookbooks - James Beard Award-winning Mustards Grill Napa Valley Cookbook, Fog City Diner Cookbook, Big Small Plates and Cindy Pawlcyn’s Appetizers. Her fifth, Cindy’s Supper Club, debuted to great reviews in May 2012.