Born in France of American parents, and a graduate of Princeton University with a combined degree in Romance Languages and Art History, Charles Dale has worked with many of the best chefs in the United States and beyond, including Daniel Boulud, Barry Wine, Jean-Paul Lacombe and Georges Mazraff. In 1988, he left a position as Sous-Chef under Boulud at Le Cirque in New York to open his own restaurant, Renaissance, in Aspen, Colorado.
Renaissance was widely acknowledged to be Aspen’s most luxurious and refined restaurant, garnering every major culinary and wine award in America, including Food and Wine Magazine’s Best New Chef in America for Charles in 1995; the James Beard Foundation nomination for Best Chef, Southwest, in 1998 and 1999; Wine Spectator’s Best of Award of Excellence; The DiRoNa Award, a Zagat rating of 28, the Mobil Four Star Award, and a host of national and international press.
In 2000, Charles opened Rustique Bistro, featuring Grandmother Cuisine, winning Esquire Magazine’s prestigious Best New Restaurant in America Award. He later opened Range, which celebrated New Western cooking, characterized by fresh organic produce, seafood and game, all procured from West of the Rockies.
Charles is also the author of the Chefs’ Guide to America’s Best Restaurants, has launched a line of all-natural marinades for consumers under the St. Dalfour label, and has contributed recipes to more than a dozen cookbooks nationwide.
Charles sold his restaurants in 2005 to found Dale’s Kitchen, whose line of all-natural, ready-to-use Stock in a Box was carried on various cruise lines, in hotels and independent restaurants around the country.
In 2008, Charles joined Auberge Resorts to develop and open the brand new Encantado Resort in Santa Fe, New Mexico. Featuring his trademark “Modern Rustic” cuisine, the signature restaurant, Terra, was named to the “20 Best New Restaurants of 2008” by esteemed food writer John Mariani. The hotel was awarded the prestigious AAA 5-Diamond Award from 2010 through 2012, the first and only hotel/resort in New Mexico to be so recognized.
In June 2012, as Auberge Resorts ceded management of the property to Four Seasons Hotels, Charles moved on to pursue his own project, culminating in the opening of Bouche Bistro in March 2013. Bouche has already garnered substantial acclaim and press, and is currently the only restaurant in Santa Fe to hold a coveted 4-chile rating.