The Artists Behind the Food

Executive Chef Ben Richardson

Chef Ben graduated from the California Culinary Academy in 1996.  He worked in the Bay Area and Central Valley for several years before moving to the Central Coast in 2003.  Ben was hired as the chef at Novo prior to the restaurant's opening which allowed him to play a roll in the original menu design, while building new relationships with the local farmers in the area.  In 2008, Ben co-founded Two Cooks Catering.  After three years of catering throughout the Central Coast, Ben began teaching at Cuesta College.  Whole foods along with meat and seafood butchery were the focus of his curriculum.  He returned to Novo in 2013, picking up where he left off working as the kitchen manager for 2 years before taking over as Executive Chef.  Ben lives in San Luis Obispo with his wife and two boys.

Chef Matt Wheeler

Chef Matt Wheeler is a graduate of California Culinary Academy.  Matt moved to the Central Coast after graduating in 2006 and found work in several restaurants in the area (Lido, Full of Life Flatbread & Cafe Roma).  In 2012, Matt and his wife opened their own homebased bakery and in 2013 Matt was hired at Novo.   Matt lives in Nipomo with his wife and two daughters.