Thomas Ferlesch was born and raised in Austria and educated at the prestigious Gastgewerbefachschule in Vienna. He then apprenticed at the Restaurant Schottenkeller in Vienna, before climbing the kitchen ladder of the Hotel Belvedere in Switzerland and the Princess Hotel in Bermuda. In 1979 he immigrated to the United States to become chef de cuisine of Vienna 79 Restaurant in New York City. Over the next ten years he was the executive chef of three New York City restaurants, Jean Lafitte, Chapiteau and Café Un-Deux-Trois.
In June of 1991, the chef/owner and former director of the New York Four Seasons Restaurant, George Lang, who owned Gundel Restaurant in Budapest, Hungary and Café des Artistes in New York, hired Chef Ferlesch as executive chef of Café des Artistes. In December 2000, the Great Chefs television crew showed up to tape Chef Ferlesch for Discovery Channel’s Great Chefs of America television series. George Lang closed Café des Artists in 2009.
After leaving Café des Artistes, Ferlesch owned and operated Thomas Beisl, a restaurant across the street from the Brooklyn Academy of Music, from 2002 through 2010. After he sold his restaurant, he went to work at the Pilsener Haus Beer Garden in Hoboken, New Jersey as the Executive Chef until 2015. In September of 2015 he opened, owns, and operates Werkstatt, a well-received Austrian restaurant in Prospect Park South, Brooklyn.