Chef / Owner Matt Cordes
The Atlas Room’s Chef / Owner Matt Cordes started in the hospitality business when he was still
in school. Like a lot of chefs he started
out with a natural curiosity for the kitchen at home, when he had to prepare food for himself while his parents worked, and then doing
prep work and making pizzas at a local restaurant to make money for gas and other expenses. The experience stuck with him as he went on
to college at George Mason University. To pay his way through school, he waited tables and eventually decided to try and get a full time
job as a cook. The first Prep Cook position he held was at the now closed Evans Farm Inn in Mclean, Virginia.
The prospect of a enjoying a viable career as a chef was enticing to Matt, much more so than having a desk job. He talked his way into a
Cook- Tournant position at the Hyatt Regency at Reston Town Center. This opened the door to a job at Vidalia restaurant in Washington D.C
where he spent a year working through the kitchen. He left and went on to hold Sous Chef positions at 701 Restaurant and Market Street
Bar and Grill.
After working as a Sous Chef Matt wanted to further his skills at The New England Culinary Institute, which offered an advanced
placement program that Matt easily qualified for. Matt absorbed all he could in the culinary, baking and pastry arts which greatly rounded
out his culinary repertoire. In order to complete the program he was required to perform an externship, which he completed under 2-STAR
Michelin Chef Gerard Pangaud at his eponymous restaurant Gerard’s Place in D.C. Matt stayed with Chef Pangaud for two years and was
promoted to Sous Chef during his last year. While Sous Chef he oversaw the kitchen and cooked the meals that sealed the deal on a renewed
4-STAR review from the Washington Post food critic Tom Sietsema.
Matt soon received another offer from a high profile area chef, Bob Kinkead of Kinkead’s restaurant, to help open Kinkead’s Colvin Run
Tavern in Tysons Corner. Matt accepted and was the only person hired outside of Kinkead’s to be an opening Sous Chef. After a year and
a half he decided to be an opening Partner in the Russia House Restaurant and Lounge in D.C. Then the time to move south was upon him,
so he moved down to Atlanta, Georgia. There, Matt honed his culinary edge at nationally known restaurants Seegers under Chef Guenther
Seeger, and as a Sous Chef at Bacchanalia with Chefs Anne Quatrano and Clifford Harrison.
Three years later it was time to come back to D.C. So after arriving, he took a job at the well-known area restaurant the Evening Star
Café. As Executive Chef his charge was to turn the restaurant around, after the previous Chef had mismanaged it. The task was accomplished
and Matt received a 2-star review from the Washington Post after only three months into the project. A little over two years later it was
well evidenced that the restaurant was back on track. He was offered a position to be the chef/partner in a new restaurant in Arlington,
so he left to pursue the opportunity. The delayed opening and economy led Matt to instead undertake the position of Executive Sous Chef at
the Sheraton Premiere in Tysons Corner. Over the course of a year and a half he oversaw all aspects of the Food and Beverage operation,
also acting as Executive Chef following the sudden departure of the Executive Chef. Managing a hotel with banquets over 1000 people and
a Food and Beverage revenue stream over 20 million dollars a year was a new learning experience for Matt, but he drew upon his early
Besides his rich kitchen experience, Matt has also completed his Intermediate Sommelier Certificate through the WSET and has taken
courses in Molecular Gastronomy at the French Culinary Institute in New York City. After much thought and planning Matt is now looking
forward to the realization of his plan to open a restaurant that will allow him to articulate his culinary vision and sense of hospitality.
Chef de Cuisine Bobby Beard
Bobby Beard developed his love for food at a young age from his grandmother while growing
up on a dairy farm in central Pennsylvania. Cooking for a large family, his Grandmother used only the freshest vegetables grown
in her garden and the daily milk from her dairy cows.
As a teenager, Bobby worked his way through high school at local restaurants and began learning the ins and outs of the
restaurant business. He soon found himself planning for a career in the industry. Upon completing high school he was accepted
to the apprenticeship program at the renowned Hotel Hershey. World traveled Swiss Chef Heinz Hotle introduced Bobby to a
European sensibility in cooking.
After completion of the apprenticeship Bobby wanted to travel, so he went south to the famous Breakers Hotel and Resort to
experience the top notch "Floribean" cuisine executed at this property. After experiencing a full year at The Breakers he
decided to move on to The Four Seasons hotel to work in the fine dining restaurant in the hotel starting to refine his knowledge
of upscale cuisine. The warm weather was great but the challenge of New York City and a opportunity to work at The River Café
led Bobby back north. After perfecting his cooking skills in New York City for a couple of years he came to the D.C. area and
landed a job as Sous Chef at Citronelle under Chef Michel Richard. The two years under the tutelage of Chef Richard gave him
the advanced techniques of a true master chef. Bobby then went on to a more rustic style of cooking Olives restaurant by Chef
Todd English, honing his skills in country Italian cooking.
Bobby’s first Executive Chef position was at Pesce in D.C., working for Owner Regine Palladin developing a daily changing menu
that put the restaurant back in the Washingtonian top 100 restaurants list. He was approached by the owners of Vermillion
Restaurant in Old Town Alexandria to turn around the kitchen, where he succeeded by garnering a two and a half star review
from the Washington Post Critic Tom Sietsema. Following a three-year tenure at Vermillion, Bobby traveled to Las Vegas to
open a restaurant for Chef Louis Osteen and then went full circle back to Pennsylvania for a break. Bobby is now in the D.C
area again as Chef de Cuisine at a new restaurant venture with Matt Cordes.
Interior Design: Krisztina Felner.
Krisztina Felner, has brought The Altas room the wonderful and warm designs. Krisztina,
the owner and operator of Modern Washingtonian has broad experience in both commercial and
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