Tim Cushman is Chef Owner of o ya, an award-winning, contemporary Japanese restaurant in Boston. Since opening in 2007, he and o ya have received numerous accolades, including being named by New York Times food critic, Frank Bruni, as the #1 new restaurant in the United States in 2008. Cushman was also picked as a Best New Chef 2008 by Food & Wine magazine. Food & Wine also selected o ya as one of the top 10 new restaurants in the world, and gayot.com named the restaurant as one of the Top 40 in the U.S. Bon Appetit and Details magazines have recognized o ya as one of the top 10 sushi restaurants in the U.S. Locally, Boston Magazine named o ya as the #1 restaurant in Boston in 2009, and received “Best of Boston” honors for four consecutive years since its inception.


Chef Cushman, 58, is a Boston native. He earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Jazz & Classical Guitar from Berklee School of Music in Boston, then moved to California in 1980 to pursue the music business. Cushman took a job in a restaurant, as many aspiring musicians do. That was the start of what would become a culinary adventure around the world.


He has spent the last 28 years cooking around the world in Japan, France, Thailand, Italy, England, Germany, Hong Kong, Mexico and Taiwan. In that time, he also served for seven years as a Corporate Chef with Lettuce Entertain You in Chicago, where he developed menus for the group’s new concepts. In 1994, Cushman launched his own consulting business, Ideas in Taste, and developed menus for a variety of restaurateurs, from independents to large operators.


Presently, Tim and his wife, Nancy, are Co-Proprietors of o ya, in addition to working on various restaurant consulting projects.