When Johnny Ballen first opened the Squeaky Bean in Lower Highland in 2009, chef Max MacKissock was behind the burners in a kitchen that was barely big enough for him to turn around. Ballen and MacKissock opened a spacious new restaurant and kitchen in LoDo in 2012, but MacKissock moved on in the summer of 2013 (and is now getting ready to open Bar Dough with Highland Tap & Burger owners Juan and Katie Padro), to be replaced by Theo Adley. And now the Squeaky Bean has announced that Adley's last day will be May 16 and that Chris MacGillivray will be taking over as executive chef beginning May 20
MacGillivray is no stranger to the Bean, having worked there with MacKissock in 2012. He's also done time as chef de cuisine under John Broening at Olivea, sous chef at Linger and chef of notable pop-ups Noble Swine Supper Club and Monkey Town 4. Before coming to Colorado, he worked in restaurants and resorts in his home state of New Mexico as well as in New York City and Charleston, North Carolina. MacGillivray comes to the Squeaky Bean fresh of a stint as executive chef at Caveau Wine Bar in Uptown.
According to Ballen, the new chef plans to continue with the Bean's dedication to highlighting fresh produce from three farm plots owned by the restaurant, most notably the three acres of land in Lakewood farmed by Squeaky Bean partner Joshua Olsen in conjunction with Warren Tech High School.
MacGillivray plans to add his touches to the lunch and dinner menus, but the Bean's brunch will remain mostly untouched. “The Bean has always had a markedly whimsical style, and there’s definitely some of that in my cooking game, but ultimately I want to focus on our great farm ingredients, solid techniques and delicious flavors that resonate with our guests,” says MacGillivray.