Pheast Food Group was created by foodies, for foodies, with the mission to create an incubator dedicated to farm fresh, sustainable and edgy food concepts – be it fast casual, quick service, or full service – and to have a lot of fun doing it!
Our first new concept out from the team led by Chef Fred Raynaud, is Hen Quarter – an ode to the best of Southern fare and classic cocktails. Dishes full of flavors that can only come from the best in farm to table design. The first two locations in Old Town, Alexandria, Va and downtown Silver Spring, MD will be complete in summer and fall 2016.
Up Next? Funded by Thompson Hospitality, Pheast Food Group has taken over the management of The American Tap Room, Austin Grill , Willie T’s Lobster Shack, and Be Right Burger holdings and will be updating those concepts in 2017.
Started in early 2016, Pheast Food Group was begun by food professionals Ron Hallagan, Chef Fred Raynaud, and Robyn Leenaerts, supported by a team full of Pheast Beasts that are ready to plant a flag in the ground of culinary greatness.
Ron Hallagan has managed a diverse range of hospitality businesses that span the industry spectrum: restaurants, catering, retail, hotels, recreation, and sports venue management.
Prior to the creation of Pheast Food Group, he was COO with Catering by Uptown and Star Restaurant Group. Prior to that he was Vice President of Operations for Guest Services, Inc. for 15 years, overseeing National Park Service operations, Museum restaurants, the House of Representatives, Supreme Court, and Smithsonian. He has been responsible for catering the annual Rock Creek Tennis Tournaments, Cherry Blossom Festivals, and Smithsonian Folk Life Festivals, as well as the 1.7 million on the National Mall for President Obama’s first Inauguration.
Ron received his BA in Hotel, Restaurant Management from Michigan State University; Business Masters from Central Michigan University; Haute Cuisine Certification from L’Acadamie de Cuisine; Sommelier Certificate form Washington Sommelier Society; Lean Six Sigma Certification from Villanova University; and an Executive Coaching certificate from the International Coaching Federation. He authored a book on Continuous Process Improvement for the food service industry in 2013, The Food Manager’s Bible, and has been a guest lecturer on the subject of Menu Engineering at Georgetown University and James Madison University.
As a third generation restaurateur, following in the footsteps of his father, an artisan cook and restaurateur, and his grandfather, a baker and boxer at the turn of the 20th century in San Diego California, Chef Raynaud embraced the Culinary profession at an early age.
Now, as Vice President Culinary & Innovation, for Pheast, LLC,Chef Raynaud leads the company’s food mission and direction.
“I want to create food concepts that sizzle with comfort, flavor, and honesty… food that causes you to reflect on memories, where you are drown into the meal with images of your grandmother of father cooking an amazing meal. That’s where my passion lies. Food is such a part of life. It hinges on the richness and fondness of the past. It has the ability, not only to nourish, but spawn social engagement. Food should be approachable, true food—food for every body. Pheast allows me to take my love for cookery and create interpretive contemporary comfort cuisine.”
FRED RAYNAUD, WCEC, CEC, CCA, WMCS
Robyn Leenaerts brings over 20 years of branding and marketing experience to her position as Chief Marketing Officer for Pheast Restaurant Group. A highly strategic and creative marketer, Robyn combines innovative thinking with brand savvy to create one-of-a-kind dining experiences and breakthrough results. She oversees all aspects of Pheast’s marketing, including branding, advertising, social media, and public relations.