Executive Chef & Owner
Sommelier & Private Dining Coordinator
Nelson D. Perkins
Nelson, a native of Colorado, spent 15 years in the securities brokerage business before packing up his young family and moving to New York to attend the French Culinary Institute. Nelson graduated among the top of his class, earning the Grand Diplome de Cuisine, then spent time following graduation interning, trailing and working at a number of acclaimed New York restaurants including Blue Hill. Nelson still considers himself new to the industry and continues to be very much “self-taught”.
Nelson is an appointed member of the Colorado Department of Agriculture's Specialty Crops Advisory Board, where helps decide grant application awards. He considers Julia Child, Dan Barber, Marco Pierre White, Jacques Pepin, and his parents to be among his strongest culinary influences. In addition, he credits years of travel, cooking, adventure and time spent on his family’s ranch with forming his gastronomical tastes. His agricultural background and the “country” living of his youth have greatly influenced his use of offal and his passion for curing and charcuterie. His food philosophy is to use the best available seasonal ingredients and treat them gently.
Nelson and his wife Allison opened Colt & Gray (named after their two oldest children – Coulter and Grayson), in August of 2009. In 2013, they expanded Colt & Gray, adding private dining space, Ste. Ellie (bar/speakeasy-named for their daughter), and Viande an in house butcher shop & curing facility. Nelson is forever thankful to Allison for her support in allowing him to chase this dream.