kimpton santa barbara outpost restaurant salmon

Meet the Team

Executive Chef Damien Giliberti

A native of Northern New Jersey, Giliberti draws inspiration from his Italian-American upbringing, where his family owned and lived next to their pizzeria. A graduate of Johnson and Wales University in Miami, Giliberti did stints working in kitchens from North Carolina to Miami, before heading West and taking a post at Finch & Fork for 4 years, then Outpost for the past 2 years. His experience shaped his culinary background, where he honed his craft in cooking contemporary American cuisine with touches of Latin and Asian influences. Now helming Outpost’s kitchen, Giliberti will continue to create simple, yet flavorful dishes that speak to California’s seasons.

Lead Bartender Mary Valdez

With more than a decade of experience behind the bar, Mary Valdez calls herself "a farm-to-bar kind of girl," meaning that she brings a seasonal sensibility to her cocktail menus at Outpost. Though some of her favorite recipes are truly timeless, Mary likes to give those classics a fresh twist by incorporating her own house-made fruit syrups and shrubs using California produce when it's at its peak. Recent creations include the In Full Bloom, a take on a gin and tonic made with Hendrick's and housemade prickly pear shrub, plus a rotating menu of beer cocktails celebrating Santa Barbara's awesome local brewing scene. With such a variety of great ingredients at her fingertips, "living in California definitely has its perks," she says.