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Hunter Morton Promoted, New Chef at Max’s Oyster Bar in West Hartford

Hunter Morton has been promoted to culinary director of the Max Restaurant Group. Photo credit: Ronni Newton

West Hartford resident Hunter Morton will become culinary director for Max Restaurant Group and also oversee the ‘Max Chef to Farm’ series.

By Ronni Newton

Max Restaurant Group announced Wednesday that Hunter Morton has been promoted and will step away from his role as executive chef at Max’s Oyster Bar in West Hartford to assume the role of culinary director of the Max Restaurant Group, responsible for working with and supporting the restaurant group’s executive chefs as their menus evolve.

Morton will also oversee the Max Restaurant Group’s popular summer Max Chef to Farm series.

“I look forward to working with all our chefs and helping them bring even more creative and fresh ideas to all our menus and ultimately to our guests,” Morton said in a statement, adding that he is very excited about the newly-created role.

“We have toyed with the idea of having someone in this position for years but finding the ‘right’ person for the job was difficult; someone who is hard-working, understands our culture, makes great food and has the respect of our Chefs and the group. Hunter has met those qualifications during his 13 years with the group,” Max Restaurant Group Vice President and COO Scott Smith said in a statement.

In addition to his day job, Morton is known for giving back to the community. He was one of the founding chefs of the West Hartford-based “Growing Great Schools” nonprofit, which works to bring fresh and healthy lunch items to school cafeterias, sponsors farmers markets, and encourages wellness in the schools.

Morton participates in career days, including a recent Junior Achievement Career Walk held in West Hartford, and volunteers with Journey Home, a Hartford-based nonprofit committed to ending homelessness.

Bob Peterson will assume Morton’s role as executive chef at Max’s Oyster Bar in West Hartford. A veteran of the Max Restaurant Group, Peterson was formerly executive chef at Max Fish in Glastonbury and most recently worked as head chef at Carbone’s Prime in Rocky Hill.

“His expertise and creativity will help maintain the culinary standards that the restaurant has cultivated over the years and continue to keep it as the ‘Best Seafood Restaurant,’ as voted in a number of recent local polls,” stated the announcement from Max Restaurant Group.

Max Restaurant Group, which was founded by Richard Rosenthal in 1986, has 11 locations in Connecticut, Massachusetts, and Florida. For more information, visit maxrestaurantgroup.com.

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