CWU News

New campus sous chef joins CWU Dining Services team

CWU Dining Services has made another valuable addition to its organization. Jack Mazzacavallo joined the culinary team this fall as the campus sous chef, having worked most recently at the prestigious Seattle restaurant, Copine.

Last year, Mazzacavallo was named one of Seattle’s Hot New Chefs 2018 by Seattle Met. He also has worked at several upscale restaurants in Seattle, including Marché, the Goldfinch Tavern at the Four Seasons, and Matt’s in the Market.

“Jack is a very creative chef with extensive experience at some of the best restaurants in our state,” said Joe Ritchie, CWU’s campus executive chef. “It is rare that a chef with his level of training and expertise is at the same time very humble and eager to share knowledge.”

Mazzacavallo grew up in Camas and attended the University of Washington. He is excited to join the university, not just for the change in pace, but also because of the growth opportunities and stability that CWU provides. 

“I was on burn-out street that a lot of chefs are on where you work 70 to 80 hours a week without really much of a future, and I had an opportunity to step back and evaluate the path I was on,” he said.

In his short time at CWU, Mazzacavallo already has been instrumental in elevating the university’s culinary offerings. For example, he helped introduce Sesame | Ginger in Holmes Dining Room, which serves poke, ramen, and stir fry à la minute. 

“Central will benefit greatly from having someone on the culinary team who can contribute to the quality and creativity of the food we serve on campus while teaching his strong work ethic and functional skill to both our full-time and student staff,” Ritchie said.

These new options are a part of the many changes that CWU Dining Services has made in the last year, including the opening of Northside Commons, the rebranding of the campus grab-and-go line, the introduction of more locally sourced and fresh foods, and an increased focus on health, wellness, and sustainability.

“We were lacking the culinary depth, especially at the leadership level, in order to support and execute the culinary vision we are just beginning,” said Dean Masuccio, director of CWU Dining Services. “I’m excited for the positive contributions Chef Jack has already made upon his arrival and look forward to the many great things he will contribute to moving forward.”

Mazzacavallo is just as excited about the changes that are still to come, saying, “My role at the university is a new role, so I think my experience and having that chef’s mindset will be good things to bring to the table.”


Media contact: David Leder, Department of Public Affairs, 509-963-1518,