Born and raised in Galveston, Texas, Chef Jeff Balfour fell in love with his state’s rich culinary heritage. Today, as the Executive Chef and Co-Founder of Southerleigh Hospitality Group, he shares this passion with everyone who visits his restaurants by showcasing the local bounty of the Gulf Coast. Over the last several years, Balfour and his restaurants have anchored San
Antonio’s recent explosion of elevated, experimental dining and helped redefine the city’s diverse culinary landscape.
After honing his skills in Houston kitchens, including the former La Reserve at the Omni Hotel, and learning from luminary chefs like Timothy Keating and Mercer Mohr, Balfour moved to San Antonio to helm the restaurant at the new Hotel Valencia Riverwalk. Under his direction, Citrus Restaurant became known as one of San Antonio’s most innovative fine dining destinations, and was named “Best Hotel Restaurant” by the San Antonio Express-News in 2009, 2010 and 2011. Balfour also received one of the industry’s top honors, being chosen to showcase his talents on two separate occasions at the James Beard House in New York.
In April 2015, Balfour brought a new concept to the iconic Pearl Historic District in San Antonio called Southerleigh Fine Food & Brewery. Named “Best Restaurant in San Antonio” by San Antonio Magazine, Southerleigh Fine Food marries cross-cultural influences from Houston, Austin, San Antonio, and the Gulf Coast. Balfour’s latest opening, Southerleigh Haute South, pays homage to his childhood in Galveston with a menu centered on Gulf Coast seafood and Southern-style fried chicken. Since opening in September 2020, Southerleigh Haute South has earned several accolades including “Best New Restaurant” by both CultureMap and San Antonio Express News, as well as “Best Fried Chicken” and “Best Brewery” by San Antonio Express News.