Born and raised in Galveston, Texas, Chef Jeff Balfour developed a love for his native cuisine and the freshest ingredients. Balfour realized his culinary passion over fifteen years ago while studying at the University of Texas at Austin. Balfour switched gears and transferred to Conrad Hilton School of Hotel and Restaurant Management at the University of Houston.
While working in kitchens in Houston, including the former La Reserve, he honed his skills in French and American cuisine under several of the nation’s top chefs. In 2002, Balfour moved to San Antonio after given the honor of creating the food service concept for Hotel Valencia Riverwalk. Under his direction, Citrus Restaurant became known as one of San Antonio’s most innovative fine dining restaurants. Citrus has been recognized numerous times and consistently named among the top hotel restaurants in San Antonio, including being named as a “Best Hotel Restaurant” by the San Antonio Express-News in 2009, 2010 and 2011. Balfour also received one of the culinary world’s top honors, being chosen to showcase his talents at the James Beard House in New York.
In April 2015, Balfour brought a new concept to the historic Pearl’s brewhouse with the opening of his restaurant, Southerleigh Fine Food & Brewery. The restaurant, which is Balfour’s modern take on Texas’ cross-cultural cuisine, is influenced by the coastal classics of Chef Balfour’s upbringing in Galveston married with the comfort of southern cuisine.