Jason Knibb: Mixing the Classic With the Modern

Nine-Ten’s executive chef cooks regional cuisine with a twist

Chef Jason Knibb

Executive chef Jason Knibb is known for his modern, fresh cooking style. Knibb, who has worked at Nine-Ten since 2003, gained many awards for the restaurant, including the 2013 Zagat Survey Food Score of 26, 2012 Gayot Top 10 Molecular Restaurants in the U.S., and the 2012 Zagat Top 10 Restaurants in San Diego. It is not a surprise that he’s the 2010’s Rising Star Chef Winner (only one other San Diego chef received this honor).

Knibb’s success could be attributed to the experience he gained from working in restaurants in Los Angeles, San Francisco, Santa Monica, and even Warsaw, Poland. As part of his culinary training, he worked with Wolfgang Puck and Roy Yamaguchi. The chef later worked at Venice, California’s Joe’s Restaurant in 1996 and Utah’s Tree Room in 1998.

Chef Knibb’s inspiration comes from the “simple common philosophy about cooking” that his mentors believe in. He combines the diverse Californian cuisine and adds his new twist to traditional dishes. At Nine-Ten, he crafts the menu for the “Mercy of the Chef” dinner special, cooking anything that inspires him.

“For me it’s really about staying true to who you are and what the product is,” Knibb told culinary magazine Star Chefs. “I try to showcase the product, not so much mask it. Let the product speak for itself without all the fluff, really straightforward and elegant food.”


Knibb does what he says: he lets the food speak for itself.