Blog

Employee Spotlight: Meet Matthew Klemann


Here at Stanford’s, we know that our greatness comes from each and every one of our employees. From the newest host to our managers and tenured team members, every member of our team brings something special to the table to make our restaurants truly memorable. Quite possibly some of the most recognizable faces at our restaurants are our bartenders. If you have ever come into our Jantzen Beach location here in Portland Oregon, you have no doubt met one of our favorite mixologists — Matthew Klemann. If you’d like to try one of Matt’s signature delicious cocktails, make your reservation to come into Stanford’s today! Get to know Matt and his awesome Grandma right here!

How Matt Started At Stanford’s

“I started working at Stanford’s in 2003. I had frosted blond hair and pukka shell necklaces. I was managing a bar in West Linn and wanted to change to something more professional. I got the job in 2003 as a part of the opening crew. I started as a server and quickly moved into the bar as a cocktailer. I am now celebrating 18 years at this location.”

The Stanford’s Experience

“Stanford’s ALWAYS has had the BEST happy hour. It drove business. Still does! I remember going to Stanford’s on dates, and before dances in high school. The food was ALWAYS delicious and the service was always top-notch. With Ascend Hospitality Group’s ownership, I’m excited to get back to what Stanford’s has been known for: service, delicious steaks, and a great happy hour.”

The Stanford’s Family

“I have so many regulars in the bar, and many of them are the nicest, most generous people. I’ve played golf with so many of them, and I was even able to play Waverly with one of my regulars, which is probably the nicest course in Oregon. I’ve sung at some regulars’ weddings, and I just was asked to perform the ceremony at another regulars’ wedding coming up this summer. One family of regulars, “The Riddles,” I’ve known since we opened. They are at the restaurant, without fail, at least once a week. I’ve known them so long, I remember the wife being pregnant with their daughter Grace who is now 15 years old. Just crazy how much this place feels like home. Every time I come to work, it feels like I’m going in to see my family.

This place has given me lifelong friends. My philosophy is: ‘Everyone loves a smart-aleck; it’s my job to figure out what kind of smart-aleck they like.’ Some people love banter. Some people love hearing stories about me drinking wine with my 93-year-old grandma. Some people love hearing stories about my Photoshopped adventures of my grandma and I: I like to Photoshop us into different situations. She LOVES it. I have about 60 of them done. It’s made her very popular on Facebook and when she comes in, she’s a local celebrity. I take pride in being a good server, but for me, it’s more about giving the guests an experience. I feel that as long as people are laughing, and I give great service, they will always leave happy and come back.

Matt’s Passion At Stanford

“The thing I’m most proud of is creating a place that has really good beer. Not just the normal beer everyone has, the beer that people didn’t know they wanted. Introducing people to great local IPAs, pale ales, or a good local dark beer is my favorite thing. Taking over the beer program has paid off a lot. Regulars come in just for the beer. They come in to see what new local IPAs we have on tap. Being in charge of picking the beer is my favorite thing. If I know one thing, it’s BEER!”

We are proud of the ambiance and service our kind and friendly bartenders, servers, and cooks provide here at Stanford’s. Make your reservation to experience the excellent service, drinks, and food that Matt and his team serve up every day.