As a child in Oklahoma, ChrisShepherd was inspired by fresh ingredients, often scouring farms in search of straight-from-the-vine tomatoes, fresh corn, and peas. Twenty years later, he attended the Art Institute in Houston, and was intrigued by the city’s cultural diversity. He began his career as a line cook at Brennan’s of Houston, working his way up to Executive Sous Chef and Sommelier. He spent the next nine years there, nurturing his passion and talent in the culinary arts and later, developing his own style. He left Brennan’s to become Executive Chef of Catalan for the next five years.
UNDERBELLY is Chris’ first concept-one that pays tribute to Houston’s abundant culinary resources, cultural diversity, and rich food history, working with farmers & ranchers, and commits to purchasing whole crops. He also uses by-catch, lesser known Gulf species, caught during commercial fishing.
Chris is the iconic Houston chef. In his free time, he leads the Houston Culinary Tours, “Where the Chefs Eat”, taking Houstonians and visitors to his favorite spots.