The Team at Fruition

Alex/chef/proprietor

alex-seidelBorn in 1973 in Wisconsin, Seidel began his culinary career at 14, serving as sous chef at Racine’s Main Street Bistro by age 20. He attended culinary school at Western Culinary Institute in Portland, Oregon, finishing at the top of his class. After graduation, Seidel moved to California where he worked at Hubert Keller’s Club XIX at Pebble Beach Resort. He later became sous chef at Antoine Michelle, then chef de cuisine at Carmel Valley Ranch. During a trip to Colorado’s Vail Valley Alex fell in love with the mountains and soon found a home as chef de cuisine in one of Colorado’s most renowned restaurants, Sweet Basil. Chasing his first love and wife, Melissa, Seidel moved to Denver in 2002 and became executive chef at restaurateur Frank Bonanno’s fine-dining flagship, Mizuna. Seidel left Mizuna to launch his own restaurant, Fruition (fruitionrestaurant.com), which opened its doors on February 5, 2007 and remains one of Denver’s most coveted dinner reservations today. Upon opening, gayot.com named Fruition one of the top 10 new restaurants in the U.S.; Zagat soon rated Seidel’s spot the number one restaurant in Colorado, an honor it has held every year since opening; and 5280 magazine has included Fruition in its list of 25 Best Restaurants every year the ranking has run. Seidel himself has been the recipient of even more accolades, earning one of the most celebrated nods in the industry when Food & Wine magazine named him a Best New Chef in 2010. In addition, Denver Magazine called him Chef of the Year in 2009, 5280 gave him that title in 2008, and in 2016 he was nominated as a Finalist for the James Beard Foundation’s “Best Chef Southwest” honor. Seidel cooked at the 20th Anniversary of “Dinners Across America” and was an opening chef of Aspen’s Chefs Club by Food & Wine. When not cooking at Fruition, Seidel is tending to his 10-acre farm in Larkspur, CO. The ricotta from Fruition Farms Creamery (fruitionfarmscreamery.com) won a first place award from the American Cheese Society in 2011. The chef’s creamery also makes the bloomy-rind, soft-ripened cheese called Shepherd’s Halo, a hard, aged, farmstead cheese called Cacio Pecora, and the newest addition, a sheep’s milk yogurt called Skyr. In addition to making cheese, Seidel raises a heritage pork breed called “Large Black” and has planted his 10-acre farm with fruits and vegetables to supply the restaurant kitchens. In fall of 2014 Seidel opened a third endeavor: Mercantile dining & provision, a restaurant and European style market located in Denver’s Historic Union Station. With Mercantile, Seidel and his team further solidify the continuity and sustainable relationships between restaurant, farm and market.

Front of House

Charlene Seckler

Charlene Seckler

PR/Assistant to Chef Alex Seidel

Charlene Seckler

PR/Assistant to Chef Alex Seidel

Charlene has been a member of the Fruition family since day one. She is a Colorado native but has traveled and lived all over the world. Apart from her vast restaurant experience, Charlene has a background in language, literature, and a Masters Degree in Landscape Architecture. She brings her sense of organization, design style, and project management to her varied and numerous tasks that she takes care of for both restaurants and Fruition Farms.

Cody Pidcock

Cody Pidcock

Assistant Manager/Assistant Sommelier

Jenne Harris

Jenne Harris

Service Director/Guest Relations

Jenne Harris

Service Director/Guest Relations

Jenne has been involved in various aspects of the food industry for 32 years beginning with her first job at age 14, pouring coffee at her Aunt’s cafe in Northern Minnesota, 60 miles from the Canadian border.

She spent many years opening restaurants and coaching staff to appreciate hospitality, working mostly in the corporate restaurant world training managers for varied restaurant concepts. However, Jenne quickly realized that hospitality and creating guest experience was her true joy and went back to the front lines as a server for Elway's for eight years, moving into the position of opening manager for two of the four Elway’s Restaurants before joining Fruition.

As Fruition's Service Director/Guest Relations, Jenne feels that her circle of influence has found its home. She enjoys welcoming Fruition’s wonderful clientele, eating the restaurant's award-winning food, and working with a team that challenges her each day to be better.

Back of the House

Franco Ruiz

Franco Ruiz

Chef de Cuisine

Franco Ruiz

Chef de Cuisine

Franco was raised in San Diego, California. He began cooking at the age of 13 alongside his father, who has been served as his inspiration and mentor throughout Franco’s career. As a California native, the importance of using local ingredients in his cooking with the freshest, finest produce available came naturally.

Nicholas Pissare

Nicholas Pissare

Sous Chef

Nicholas Pissare

Sous Chef

Nicholas always knew that he wanted to be a Chef. He comes from a big Greek family, his grandmother was always cooking for large extended family gatherings and as a result most all of his fondest childhood memories involve food. From an early age he started working in his father's specialty food & meat market where they butchered and cured meats in house. He loves cooking for people because like his grandmother, he knows that feeding and cooking for people makes them feel better.