Geoffrey Caliger has worked in professional kitchens for 11 years and has been cooking for nine of them. Now he's returned to his native Nevada to stir up the food scene in Reno.

We met up with him inside Liberty Food and Wine Exchange on Sierra Street in downtown Reno, where the chef was already busy in the kitchen, cooking and food prepping. But, it’s Caliger's work with a knife that is almost mesmerizing... like his ability to thinly slice garlic while holding several conversations – simultaneously.       

“He's got a great drive, a great passion, he's great with food,” Mark Estee tells us. The chef and owner of Liberty hired Caliger as his executive chef for the busy operation.

“We have events…we have our Liberty Meats, we have our bake shop, we have our restaurant upstairs," Caliger points out.

There is a lot to oversee; retail, wholesale and catering. There are a lot of moving parts and about 25 pairs of moving hands.

Geoffrey thanks Chef Ryan and Chef Luis for their big contributions.

“We pride ourselves in creating a culture of learning, caring and respect,” says Estee.

And team work - Caliger is a big believer in that; "You need a team of studs, you need a team of people who love what they do and care about it and they're focused.”

The team cares about Caliger, too... already giving him the nickname “Cheffrey.”

As for focus - he and Estee are neck and neck.

“We have a lot of similarities together, so we're bouncing ideas off each other, kinda invigorates me, now," Estee smiles broadly.

Geoffrey has plans to renovate the kitchen at Liberty, maybe put in some pizza ovens... and a few other little aspirations; "I just wanna have a line out the door every single night. That's all I want, that's it. I want to be the best restaurant in Reno and I want to have people waiting to eat the food, that's it."

Liberty Food & Wine Exchange

100 N Sierra St, Reno, NV 89501 · ~3 mi

(775) 336-1091