Keaka Lee was born in Honolulu, Hawai‘i. He received his culinary and pastry arts degrees at the Culinary Institute of the Pacific at Kapiolani Community College. Cooking is an ever changing art that he has grown to love and appreciate. His curiosity is always to learn with endless creativity.
He became interested in cooking when he was a young boy. His fondest cooking memory was when he would help his grandma gather ingredients from Chinatown and cook gau (Chinese steamed rice pudding) and jook (Chinese rice porridge) for Chinese New Year.
Keaka uses the unique culture of Hawaii as inspiration to develop his craft. Hawai‘i is a melting pot of the Pacific and Asian influences that helped him to expand his palate and challenge his creativity. After years of working with some of Hawai‘i’s top chefs, he moved to New York to work for Michael Anthony at Gramercy Tavern. There he learned about seasonal cooking and contributed to the development of a distinctive American cuisine. He moved on to become a Sous Chef at Untitled and Studio Cafe at the Whitney Museum where he continued to practice regional cooking with vibrant ingredients.
Keaka has moved back home to Hawai‘i where he is currently the Chef De Cuisine at the Pig & the Lady. Keaka’s style of cuisine revolves around the community. “Cooking with a seasonal menu of elegant dishes with passion and rustic influences that showcase the restaurants relationships with local farmers, purveyors, & community.”