Parks and Rec

Local ‘Top Chef’ Surprises Campers at County Park

Celebrity chef Richard Blais cooking for campers at William Heise County Park.

Several lucky campers at a County Park were treated to a fine dining experience and an appearance on the “Rachael Ray Show.”

Celebrity chef Richard Blais surprised campers at William Heise County Park in Julian last month by cooking them meals for a segment on the show that aired Monday.

"Top Chef" Richard Blais searching for campers to cook for.
“Top Chef” Richard Blais searching for campers to cook for.

Blais, a “Top Chef” winner and owner of San Diego restaurants Crack Shack and Juniper & Ivy, raided campers’ coolers and made creative dishes from ingredients they had on hand—plus a few specialty items up his sleeve. He made tin-foil-wrapped fire-roasted corn, an omelet in a food-safe bag, and a rib-eye steak with sautéed mustard-apple onions.

The accomplished chef has called Heise one of his favorite camping sites. He even has clips of cooking for his own family at Heise on his Instagram page.

Watch Blais cook for campers on the “Rachael Ray Show.”

To make camping reservations at Heise, visit San Diego County Parks and Recreation online.

Michelle Mowad is a communications specialist with the County of San Diego Communications Office. Contact