Shane Graybeal’s biggest, “What if?” in life dates back to his childhood. He won his sixth-grade spelling bee but fell ill and could not attend the state competition. A few decades later, Graybeal was faced with another, “What if?” life decision, but this time, he went for it. In the summer of 2019, DineAmic Hospitality appointed Shane Graybeal as Executive Chef of Bandit.
Raised by modest and hard-working parents and hailing from a small town in the Appalachian Mountains, Graybeal’s upbringing helped him to mold his culinary style. He received his professional training at Johnson and Wales University, located in Charleston, S.C. and immediately upon graduating, Graybeal launched his career. He cooked at multiple east coast restaurants in cities like Charlotte and Washington, D.C. before moving to Chicago in 2016.
Chef Graybeal’s first few jobs in the Windy City included the Executive Chef position at Bin 36 before being named the Executive Chef of Sable Kitchen & Bar where he led the culinary team to be considered for a Michelin star. In the past, Chef Graybeal was always perfecting someone else’s menu, but now, he puts his personal stamp on Bandit’s menu by bringing his rustic American style of cooking to the West Loop neighborhood. Chef Graybeal’s daily responsibilities include managing all aspects of Bandit’s kitchen staff and providing the restaurant new, seasonal and authentic dishes. He also loves creating dishes with a story behind it, which includes Bandit’s Nashville Hot Chicken Tenders, which was inspired by his musical heroes in the south including Johnny Cash.
More than 20-years of culinary experience, Chef Graybeal has no regrets and “what if” thoughts now as he looks to bring new flavors and dishes to Bandit and for Chicago to try.