Born into a family of chefs, Hellrigl was raised in kitchens in Italy and the United States, including New York City where her mother and father owned Palio, an upscale Italian restaurant in Midtown. Her father Andreas Hellrigl was a Michelin-starred chef who set her up in a mini chef’s coat in the pastry section of the kitchen – the safest place for small hands. When her father passed away, Hellrigl’s mother Maria Pia took over the restaurant. Her mother’s resilience taught Hellrigl the importance of perseverance in a tough industry, while the Chefs who her father entrusted with his recipes and techniques taught her integrity in the kitchen.
Hellrigl was previously Head Chef of Via Umbria and Boulangerie Christophe in Georgetown. Her local experience also includes a stagiaire under Chef Jordan Lloyd of the Bartlett Pear Inn. In 2017, Hellrigl founded Johanna’s Table, a unique food and boutique catering business that included XII by Johanna’s Table, a monthly pop-up dinner series held throughout Washington, DC.
Hellrigl’s dishes will draw inspiration from the women of Southeast Asia she met during her four plus years working for a democracy building organization that focused on empowering women from around the globe to increase their political participation. Says Hellrigl: “By day, I trained them on women’s leadership skills or we built new legislation through women’s caucuses in parliament. By night, they introduced me to their homes, their families, their communities and exposed me to different ingredients, flavors and spices that now play a heavy role in my dishes.”
Inspired by her time spent abroad, Hellrigl looks forward to expanding Doi Moi’s Vietnamese and Thai roots to encompass new and exciting regional flavors from Cambodia, Indonesia, Myanmar, and Sri Lanka. As Executive Chef of Doi Moi, Hellrigl will introduce a more worldly Southeast Asian cuisine, paying tribute to the cosmopolitan diversity of DC itself. She states: “As Doi Moi means ‘new changes,’ we look forward to going back to our roots with some new staple dishes and enhanced menu favorites.” Hellrigl and the hardworking team behind Doi Moi plan on launching a new dessert menu and brunch program in the near future, followed by reinvigorated food offerings at downstairs cocktail lounge 2 birds 1 stone.