Tim Nugent’s culinary career began with flipping burgers and cooking eggs at a truck stop in Alburgh, Vt. He graduated from the New England Culinary Institute in 1988 and took a job at Fresh Cream in Monterey, Calif., as a sous chef, quickly working his way up to executive chef while simultaneously learning the ropes of old school French cooking.


He relocated to San Francisco in 1993, eager to work in a city where there is a great appreciation for the culinary arts and people care about where their food comes from. He immediately began work as sous chef at Michelin-starred Acquerello under Suzette Gresham, beginning an education in fine dining and learning about the complex dishes that this genre of dining tends to entail. In 1994, he transitioned to the pastry world at Zuni Café, starting as a pastry assistant and soon turning into a pastry chef under Chef/Owner Judy Rodgers, who would become the biggest mentor of Nugent’s career.


Nugent left Zuni in 1997 and became the pastry chef of Campton Place, where he honed his presentation skills while incorporating savory techniques into the creation of his sweets and pastries. Following Campton Place, Nugent joined Café Rouge in 1998 where he spent eight years utilizing his shining personality to take great care of his guests and efficiently manage the front-of-house staff as general manager. He then experienced what goes into launching a restaurant as Perbacco’s opening pastry chef in 2006, before beginning his seven-year career at the Sir Francis Drake Hotel as executive pastry chef in 2007. In 2010, Nugent took a hiatus from the Sir Francis Drake Hotel to compete in the first season of Top Chef: Just Desserts.


Nugent is excited to return to the front-of-house as General Manager/Owner at Shakewell.

 Tim’s beliefs in consistency, efficiency and knowledge translate to a high level of service for anyone who walks through the doors at Shakewell.