Chef Justin Devillier
Justin Devillier was raised in a small beach town in Orange County, California. Growing up, Justin enjoyed the beach lifestyle. Summers were spent fishing, and in the fall and winter he would free-dive for Lobsters. This bounty of local seafood inspired Justin’s will to cook professionally.
He moved to New Orleans and worked in the kitchens of Bacco, Stella!, and Peristyle. While working at Peristyle, Justin worked with James Beard Award winner Chef Anne Kearny-Sands where he learned the ins and outs of French cuisine.
In June 2004, Devillier joined the kitchen staff at La Petite Grocery. After Hurricane Katrina, Justin was promoted to Sous Chef and, as the city was struggling to recover, helped re-establish La Petite Grocery. In February 2007, he became the Executive Chef. In 2008, Justin was named a Chef to Watch by both Louisiana Cookin’ magazine and The Times-Picayune. In 2009, he was named one of New Orleans CityBusiness’ Culinary Connoisseurs for Best Executive Chef and Best Neighborhood Restaurant. Devillier “cooks in a manner so appropriate to New Orleans spirit: French bistro with a Southern twist." In 2010, Chef Devillier and his wife, General Manager, Mia Freiberger-Devillier took over majority ownership of La Petite Grocery. The restaurant has earned a coveted spot on The Times-Picayune’s “New Orleans’ Top 10 Restaurants” list for 2011 and 2012. Justin was a 2012 finalist for the James Beard Foundation’s Best Chef: South award and is a finalist for the same honor this year. Justin credits his hard working staff for any accolades the restaurant receives. This is Justin’s first year representing New Orleans and Fair Grounds Race Course at Taste of Derby.