Rise No 1 Chef Richard Bertschi Dead at 55

Bertschi photographed by Lesley Lynch at Rise No 1’s Julia Child’s 100th Birthday Celebration last August.

Hedda Dowd, owner of Rise No 1, just informed me that their beloved chef Richard Bertschi passed away suddenly yesterday. The staff posted this message on Facebook.

Today we are all shocked and deeply saddened by the sudden loss of Richard Bertschi… Richard, who worked with and for Cherif since he was seventeen. He was honest, loyal and extremely organized. These are character traits that we all strive for and are to be respected, revered and admired. Richard always had the utmost concern for rise n°1, and he was particularly caring to make sure “his crew” always had a variety of food to cook and eat! He will always be remembered for his colorful costumes – he loved Halloween and carved amazing pumpkins. He always did his work with the utmost…Merci pour tout que tu a fait pour nous.

Dowd says the information for viewing and service will be on Rise No 1’s website soon.

UPDATE: There will be a viewing this Wednesday from 6-8pm at Restland Funeral Home. Memorial service will be held Thursday at 10am in Wildwood Chapel at Restland.


  • runDMC

    He was a sweet, sweet man. He was always gracious, friendly and honest. RIP.

  • twinwillow

    I didn’t know this man. But after reading about him and his delightful personality and work ethic, I wish him peace and harmony on the other side.

  • Paula Lambert

    Richard was such a kind and wonderful person. So dedicated and caring and professional and proud of Rise and all he had accomplished there. I loved seeing him at Rise and visiting with him. What a loss for us all. For Cherif and Hedda. And especially for his brother Fred and his family. My sincere condolences to all.

  • Jim Deibel

    I was blessed to have worked side by side with Richard while working under Cherif Brahmi at Farfallo in 1977. We all worked at The Oz Club under Jean Lafont and learned so much from him. Richard was one of the kindest, gentile and humorous people I have ever met. I will miss him.

  • cbs

    very sad. Did not know him other than as a devout patron, but when we regularly set at the counter, he was engaging and generous (always at least a dessert soufflé “mistake” that always seemed to make it our way). I will miss his poubelle cheese the most. Prayers for his family and friends.