Stefan was born in Finland, but spent the majority of his childhood in Germany where he began culinary training in his early teens. He worked his way through various European and Asian kitchens. In 1998, he joined master chefs Grant McPherson, Sotta Kuhn, Jacques Torres, Jean Philip Maury and Marc Poidevin as part of the creative team for the opening of the Bellagio Hotel, Resort & Spa in Las Vegas as Executive Sous Chef. Since then, Stefan has retired in Santa Monica. Stefan has also opened the restaurant group Stefan's Restaurants in Santa Monica, 5 Steakhouses in his native Finland. Stefan is spending most of his summers traveling and growing organic vegetables, raising chickens on his farm and between each of his European restaurants, maintaining a hands-on approach in the kitchen. During winter month he is traveling for the Finnisch restaurant group SR Max and Restamax to open new concepts like Stefan's Burgers and Beer and multiple others.
The Latest from Stefan
Top Chef Heartthrobs
From Casey Thompson to Ilan Hall, here's a look at the judges and cheftestants that make us swoon.
Episode 7: Focus Group
The Quickfire challenge demands they create a sweet treat without using any sugar and in the elimination round, the chef's must serve to an interesting crowd.
Episode 14: Finale Part 2
The winner of Top Chef Season 5 is chosen in New Orleans!
Stefan was born in Finland but spent the majority of his childhood in Germany, where he began culinary training in his early teens. He worked his way through various European kitchens, learning new techniques and collecting awards along the way. In 1998, he joined master chefs Grant McPherson, Sotta Kuhn, Jacques Torres, Jean Philip Maury and Marc Poidevin as part of the creative team for the opening of the Bellagio Hotel, Resort & Spa in Las Vegas. As Executive Sous-Chef, he created, developed and executed menus for the $25 million-dollar banquet kitchen. Since then, he has held a number of Executive Chef positions and most recently worked with Celestino Drago at Enoteca Drago before opening his own business, Stefan's Catering in Santa Monica. Although he currently resides in Los Angeles, he spends his summer months hunting and fishing in his native Finland.
Stefan Should Have Paid Attention to Gail
Stefan Richter knows he should have beat C.J. Jacobson, but everyone is threatened by him.
Behind Stefan and CJ's Booty Battle
Go inside Stefan Richter and Chris 'CJ' Jacobson's rivalry as they went head-to-head (and butt-to-butt) on 'Top Chef Duels.'
Shailene Woodley Comes to Duels
The actress and foraging fan challenges Stefan Richter and C.J. Jacobsen to a rewilding challenge.