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About Us


Hamilton Johnson focuses on bringing together American regional flavors and international influences.

Chef Hamilton has built a career combining unique and familiar ingredients in untraditional combinations, leveraging classic culinary training and decidedly warm hospitality. Before Honeysuckle, Chef Hamilton was under the direction of James Beard Award-winning chef Jeffrey Buben, whose restaurants include Vidalia, Bistro Bis, and Woodward Table. Under Chef Hamilton's direction as its Executive Chef, Vidalia received a raving, three-star review from The Washington Post's Tom Sietsema, further cementing the restaurant's reputation as one of the most beloved and acclaimed restaurants in the Washington, D.C., region. Johnson attributes his ascendence and skill-building to Chef Buben's thoughtful guidance, forged over their 8 years together at Vidalia. After his tenure at Vidalia, he took over the space with his own concept named Honeysuckle. There, Johnson became popular for his melding of Icelandic and Southern cuisines. Earning the Michelin Guide's plate award 2 years in a row. Most recently, Johnson served as Chef De Cuisine at Chef Matt Baker's Michelin starred Gravitas.

Chef Hamilton regularly competes successfully on the international stage. In the past two years he was one of the top two chefs in worldwide Food & Fun competition held in Finland and Iceland, a competition he participates in annually.

A 2003 graduate of Johnson and Wales University, Chef Hamilton earned his stripes as a rising star in the Southeast working under award-winning Frank Lee at Maverick Southern Kitchens in Charleston. Chef Hamilton's approach draws from the most distinctive elements of his resume but also digs deeper into his South Carolina upbringing. His cuisine blurs the line traditionally separating "low-country" ingredients and highbrow techniques, valuing smart sourcing in service of many of its whole-animal menu items.

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