Chef Bio: Executive Chef Larry Messenger

A native born West Virginian, Larry Messenger grew up in the small town of Jane Lew. He has two beautiful children whom he loves spending time with and enjoys teaching them values of hard work and dedication.

Larry has been cooking professionally for 20 years. Early in life Larry realized his love and passion for cooking. Growing up Larry could be found in the kitchen with his mother or watching French chefs on television instead of the typical cartoons like other children his age. Although he couldn’t understand their language, he still watched and learned their techniques and dishes.

Larry was always the one cooking or experimenting on new dishes for his friends. After high school Larry attended the International Culinary Academy of Pittsburgh for a short few months, where he learned quickly that his passion was in the kitchen not the classroom. From there he learned hands on from some talented chefs in his home town and across West Virginia.

Larry traveled up the east coast and out west cooking and learning his craft searching for his own culinary style, always finding himself coming back to West Virginia. Larry began working for Canaan Valley Resort where he moved up from line cook of the main resort to Sous Chef at the ski area pub. He was subsequently offered an Executive Chef position for a hotel and conference center in Leesburg, Va., which lead to the small town of Shepherdstown, Wv, where he took the role of Executive Sous Chef for a fine dining restaurant.

After years of working for fine dining Larry decided to work for a contract company in which he became the Chef project manager for dining service for The Maryland State Police Academy. Missing the chaos and the creativity of working in a restaurant Larry jumped at the opportunity to work at The Highline Restaurant and Railway Lounge as their Sous Chef which has lead him to become their Executive Chef. Larry enjoys everyday coming to work to create and maintain the high standards of the Highline Restaurant.

Larry has been a type 2 diabetic for many years and struggles every day to balance his health and the food he loves so much preparing. One day Larry is hoping to open his own restaurant that will focus more on diabetes-friendly cuisine and more awareness of diabetes itself.