Chef Nowlin draws upon both his culinary and life experiences; most notably his time at three Michelin Star restaurant The French Laundry. Nowlin, a native of California who came to San Antonio at the age of 11, began working in a professional kitchen by 14. He discovered his passion for cooking and began his training at local French hot spot, Chez Vatel & Bistro, under Chef Damien Watel. Nowlin then went to The Lodge of Castle Hills where he trained under Chef Jason Dady. Hard work and dedication paid off and while at The Lodge, Nowlin received an opportunity to work in the kitchen at The French Laundry. This brought Nowlin back to California under the tutelage of Chef Thomas Keller.
At The French Laundry, Chef Nowlin worked as “the Butcher,” fabricating all proteins for the restaurant. This station, considered one of the most difficult in the restaurant, taught Nowlin a great deal about product appreciation and utilization. Upon returning to San Antonio, he took over as Chef de Cuisine at Las Canarias and later as Executive Chef at The Hotel Valencia and its signature restaurant Citrus.
Nowlin also kept occupied with philanthropic endeavors outside of the kitchen. He hosted “Wicked Nights at Wickes,” a monthly charity supper club, whose proceeds would go to Haven for Hope, a San Antonio homeless shelter. In addition to “Wickes,” Nowlin was also the Chef Curator for the annual “Hot Wells Harvest Feast,” which brought in 30 chefs for a collaborative outdoor celebration, benefiting the Hot Wells Conservancy directly.
Chef Nowlin then found opportunity at a new concept, consulting with bookselling giant Barnes & Noble. The national concept, Barnes & Noble Kitchen, opened its 4 th location in Plano, Texas. With Nowlin at the helm, the new restaurant established itself through Nowlin’s own visions: chef driven, locally sourced product, executed at the highest level.
Chef Nowlin is now excited about the opportunity to work alongside Chef Stephan Pyles and lead the team at Flora Street Café. With this new opportunity comes yet another chance for him to push the boundaries culinarily and do what he loves most: create exquisitely beautiful food that tastes even better than it looks.
Outside of work Nowlin dotes on his son, Keller, named after his culinary idol, and his newborn daughter, Mila. Nowlin also continues to skateboard, proving that some hobbies and pastimes, like cooking, transcend time and age.