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  Meet the Team  

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Beverage Director

Ruairi Gilles is a world-class drinks expert with 24 years of experience leading development and operations for some of the world’s best bars. He hosts two successful YouTube channels and is a dad to two awesome kids.  Before moving from London to Los Angeles in early 2023, Ruairi held senior positions at Soho House Group and Match Bar Group - a business widely considered to have been at the forefront of the London cocktail renaissance. It was here that Ruairi had the opportunity to work with bartending legends such as Dick Bradsell and Sasha Petraske, and under the tutelage of Dale DeGroff and Mark Ridgwell, Ruairi’s passion for cocktails developed along with his ability to deliver stand-out new recipes and classic blends. 

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Executive Chef

A U.S. Army veteran turned culinary professional, Chef John Wayne Formica has been evolving classic new American cuisine for more than a decade. In 2006, Formica attended The Cooking and Hospitality Institute of Chicago, extending to Sorrento, Italy. Over the years, Formica worked his way up through the ranks of some of Chicago’s most notable restaurants. C-House, alongside Chef Marcus Samuelson, Sunda with the late Chef Rodelio Aglibot, Homestead on the Roof, Chop Shop, and Chicago Chop House.  In 2018 John moved to California and worked with Tao Hospitality and a boutique restaurant in Santa Barbara County. He currently resides in Ojai, Calif., with his wife, Elizabeth, and their 4 boxers.

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Chief Operations Officer-Partner

John Damas breathes restaurant culture, having spent his entire career in all facets of this diverse industry.  Originally based in Chicago, John has worked with well-respected Chicago-based organizations, including The Gibsons Restaurant Group and the famous Chicago staple, The Cubby Bear.  Through his years spent operating hospitality establishments, John cultivates cohesive teams that support individual excellence, team collaboration, exceptional service, and an approachable hospitality culture that brings guests back time and again.  Passionate about uncovering new opportunities within communities,  John and his family relocated from Chicago to Westlake Village, CA, to oversee the development of Crawford's Social as COO/Partner. 

Crawfords Social Team
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