Kristofor Lofgren – Founder & CEO
Kristofor is the founder and CEO of Bamboo Sushi & Bamboo Izakaya. Kristofor is a consummate creator and likes thinking of new ways to disrupt what he views as old and outdated business models. His goal with Bamboo is to create the most innovative and creative restaurant group in America. Bamboo Sushi & Izakaya are the living embodiment of this mission, whereby the environment, people, community, and profits are all accounted for to the highest level, in unison, in a way not seen before in this industry. When Kristofor is not working to foster and grow the culture and people of Team Bamboo, you can probably find him traveling to meet with suppliers, environmental scientists, and policy makers. Kristofor enjoys spending his time outside of work with his wife, family, friends and participating in adventure and adrenaline sports.
Brandon Hill – Director of Operations
Brandon has participated in almost every role in the restaurant industry. Starting at age 15 as a chef, Brandon quickly fell in love with food and service. After moving to Seattle from Denver to learn with new culinary talents, Brandon de cided to give sushi a try. Almost 10 years later, Brandon was the executive sushi chef at Bamboo Sushi when it opened its doors in 2008. After many years in the kitchens of great restaurants, Brandon decided he wanted a new challenge, and became the general manager of Bamboo Sushi. Now, Brandon is taking on a new role as Director of Operations. Brandon is the captain of Team Bamboo, making sure all products, supply chains, people, and cultural values are working to their best, and highest level. When Brandon is not challenging himself in new roles, he likes spending time with his friends, camping, and having a great glass of scotch.
Erin Butterworth – Director of Hospitality
Working in restaurants over half her life, Erin truly loves what she does at Bamboo. Raised in Atlanta, she earned a Restaurant Management degree from Georgia State only solidifying her love of hospitality. She has had the pleasure of working with great people with terrific values and principles during her career, and that has helped form her leadership style. She believes the value of a happy staff is the most important in that they are the direct link to your guest. “Through high standards, honesty and encouragement, one can achieve the results they hope for.” Her passion is people, food, and drink. Erin’s goal is to give all she has to those around her, being infectiously happy. In her spare time, she enjoys volunteering with animals, music, and spending time with her friends. A nice glass of rye also never hurts!
Jin Soo Yang – Executive Chef
Having been in the industry for over half of his life, the culinary world is a true passion for Jin. The main thing he enjoys about being a chef is providing a learning environment for his team, as well as for himself. Jin has found a home at Bamboo, as he puts it, “being surrounded by such great people” everyday has created his ideal working environment. Forever learning, growing professionally, as well as personally, has strengthened Jin’s passion for his career choice. “Organized chaos” in professional kitchens is something Jin thrives on, as well as giving his guests a “wow” experience, and not simply just food to eat. When he isn’t working, Jin likes to eat out at other restaurants, research new techniques, dishes, or things we can do to improve on current standards. He also loves to snowboard, mountain bike, and fish. Pretty much anything that has to do with nature and being in the outdoors.
Chris Paquette – Culinary Director
Chris has had a love for restaurants and for cooking since as far back as he can remember. Growing up, Chris could not wait to get into the kitchens of great restaurants across America. While most other kids were hanging out after high school playing video games or going to the mall, Chris was busy already working in restaurants. Flash-forward to adulthood, and Chris has only heightened his love and appreciation for cooking. After spending time in some of the best kitchens in the California Bay Area he decided to try his hand in Portland’s blossoming food scene. After working in kitchens across the Rose City, Chris finally found a home at Bamboo Sushi. Since then, he has been consumed with a purpose to make his life at home and at Bamboo Sushi as sustainably responsible and delicious as possible. When Chris isn’t exploring Portland’s eats he is cooking in his own kitchen or exposing his kids to such culinary delights as duck, lamb, and raw fish. Oh and anything “PORK”! When not creating new and amazing dishes at Bamboo Sushi, Chris enjoys playing drums, painting, hanging with his best friend, Alyssa (his wife), or watching his favorite movies with their children…Star Wars 4-6
Jasmine Pearsall – Office Leader
A Portland native, Jasmine came to Bamboo in July 2014 from the publishing industry where she was an accountant. She was very intrigued by the prospect of working in a startup environment, and more importantly the opportunity to work for a company that is making a tangible impact on the world. Jasmine is currently the Office Leader for both Bamboo Sushi and Bamboo Izakaya, and enjoys fielding each challenge that is thrown her way. In her spare time, Jasmine enjoys practicing yoga, going on adventures with her friends, and riding her motorcycle.
Adi Somadi – Executive Sushi Chef
Adi is the Executive Sushi Chef at Bamboo Sushi. Each day, He focuses on creating the best experience for his guests and his team by fostering the sacred relationship between his sushi chefs and guests through an unforgettable dining experience. He has been making sushi for over 17 years; studying and learning through hands-on training and personal experience at many restaurants in the greater Portland area. At Bamboo Sushi, he values the personal challenge of creating new, beautiful, sustainable, and intricate specials for each and every evening, while also encouraging his emerging sushi chefs through personal inspiration and positive reinforcement. When Adi is not working, he enjoys quality family time, eating out at new restaurants in his goal to continue building his knowledge of all restaurant styles…. Oh yeah, and playing with his puppy.
Virginia Fellows – Front of House Leader, Bamboo Sushi SE
Originally from Eugene, Virginia moved to Portland to be part of a larger restaurant scene and found a home at Bamboo. When not at work, Virginia enjoys reading, watching movies, coffee with friends, and forest adventures with her two dogs.
Erik Englund – Chef de Cuisine, Bamboo Sushi NW
Erik started his career in restaurants over ten years ago. Though he is a proud Michigander, the culinary landscape of Portland, Oregon was enough to draw him away from the Great Lakes. Joining Bamboo Sushi in 2012, with an obsession for fresh local produce, Erik worked his way into his role as Chef de Cuisine. Outside of his kitchen in Northwest Portland, Erik can be found grazing at any of Portland’s many farmers markets, exploring comestibles with friends, or jogging around town.
Jennifer Freedman – Front of House Leader, Bamboo Sushi NW
Jennifer grew up in Portland, where she developed a reverence for rain and the Gold Room at Powell’s Books. After studying Restaurant Management at Cornell University’s School of Hospitality, she spent six years working in the restaurant industry in New York City. After a tumultuous love/hate relationship with the subway system and having eaten more pizza and bagels than anyone probably should, she returned to Oregon and found the perfect home at Bamboo Sushi’s NW 23rd location. Jennifer loves writing, scotch, and animals — especially cats! Her favorite sushi is Ikura (salmon roe).
Job Martinez – Head Sushi Chef, Bamboo Sushi SE
Job moved to Oregon with his family as a teenager, and began working in restaurants right away. At 15 he started washing dishes in a sushi bar in Lake Oswego, which launched his love for both food and Japanese culture. He has been making his way through the ranks of the restaurant industry ever since. Despite all the time spent in various Sushi bars over the years, for Job Bamboo Sushi stands apart. He views his work here as more than “just a job”– it’s a passion. At Bamboo, Job feels he’s part of something bigger than himself, and that his work can actually affect the way society consumes seafood. He’s proud of what he serves, and enjoys eating sashimi every day– especially salmon. When not slicing fish behind the sushi bar, Job is a loving father whose favorite quote is “treat everybody the way you want to be treated”.
Yoshi Ikeda – Head Sushi Chef, Bamboo Sushi NW
Yoshi’s experience in Japanese cuisine began in Tokyo, Japan where he was born. He started his career as a chef at an early age, and learned foundational sushi skills though hands-on training in Tokyo. In 2004, he decided to move to the United States. He worked in some of the most top-rated sushi restaurants in Hollywood, Santa Monica, and Pasadena, California. His experience in California taught him a new fusion style of Japanese cuisine which comes through in his food today. In 2014, he brought his passion for food to Portland where he found Bamboo. When he is not working, he enjoys spending time with his family, and exploring his new home, Portland.
Andy Adams – Bar Leader, Bamboo Sushi NW
Andrew is a New England native, though a happy transplant to the Northwest. Working in the service industry has provided great opportunities for personal and professional growth; a path that led him to become a leader of the most dedicated group of bartenders in Portland. Andrew’s appreciation of fine beverages met with direction and purpose at Bamboo where he now guides the day to day operations of the liquor bar at NW 23rd, as well as helping to refine an already impressive catalog of beverages for the Sushi side of Bamboo. His goal is to join a diverse collection of Japanese sake with the excellent wines, craft brews, and spirits of the Pacific Northwest.