It’s true. Chef Hans Schadler brought a career of experience to Williamsburg when he opened Waypoint Seafood and Grill more than four years ago.
But resting on those laurels was far from anything he set out to do. In fact, despite 45 years of international success, countless awards and the loyal respect of his peers, Chef Hans continues to impress diners and peers alike – even as recently as this month.
On March 6, the Virginia Chefs Association held its annual Gala Awards Dinner at Waypoint, honoring VCA Members who excel in perfecting their craft, and once again Chef Hans was recognized for his innovation and culinary integrity.
Chef Hans was named “Chef of the Year,” an award that left him humbled.
“Receiving such an acknowledgement from my peers is humbling, especially at this stage of my career,” he said. “Providing opportunities for new culinary professionals is as important today as it was when the association began decades ago. Our continued commitment to the next generation of culinary artists will keep our chapter strong for years to come.”
For the first time, the award ceremony and annual event was opened to the public. Cooking stations were set up around the restaurant where a handful of Virginia’s culinary maestros were all under one roof, showcasing what they do best for their long-standing supportive patrons.
Since 1974, the VCA has been promoting professional growth and education of the Culinary Arts through various avenues. These include an apprenticeship program, educational programs, fundraisers, social events and public awareness campaigns.
Chef Hans’s career can be highlighted by an abundance of accolades, including cooking for several presidents of the United States and even being responsible for coordinating all meal functions during the Queen of England’s visitation to the Williamsburg Inn.
Chef Hans received his culinary training in Frankfurt, Germany, and received his Doctorate of Culinary Arts from Johnson and Wales University in Providence, R.I.
Earlier this year, Chef Hans earned the national Hermann G. Rusch Chef’s Achievement Award. The award honors chefs who have demonstrated the highest level of commitment to both ACF and the culinary profession. Chef Hans described his relationship with Chef Rusch, for whom the award was named, as long and good all the way to his passing.
“Hermann Rusch’s passion for the craft inspired me and kept my career in the right perspective from the first time we met in 1977,” Chef Hans said.
When he opened Waypoint four years ago with daughter, Tina Schadler-Phillips, his goal was to incorporate a theme featuring a menu where tradition create a dining “waypoint” at the intersection of classic culinary techniques with modern creativity.
It’s a goal Chef Hans achieves every day in his restaurant, as his satisfied customers attest, and this annual award celebrates.