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For over a decade, Jazz Standard has been setting the standard—world-class jazz, warm hospitality, pitch-perfect sound, and award-winning Southern cuisine and barbecue in an intimate and comfortable environment. As one of the world's top jazz venues, Jazz Standard hosts both legendary artists of today and bright stars of tomorrow.

Jazz Standard is a non-tipping restaurant.
Hospitality Included.

Seth Abramson

Artistic Director


Seth provides the artistic vision for the room and is the founding Artistic Director. Through his curatorial expertise in spotting talent, Jazz Standard has given many now well-established jazz artists their first major break in the NY market. A guitarist himself, Seth holds degree in music from NYU, and has worked in just about every aspect of the music business from publishing and record labels to agencies and management. As President and Founder of Rabbit Moon Productions, Inc., Seth continues to produce a number of music events and festivals, including the Oval Lawn Series in Madison Square Park, and served as the founding music director and producer for the Big Apple Barbecue Block Party for over a decade. He is a Grammy Award winning producer with multiple Grammy nominated recordings.

Photo by John Rogers

Bret Lunsford

Culinary Director


Bret Lunsford is the Culinary Director of Blue Smoke. Born in Atlanta, Georgia and raised in Texas and Mississippi, Bret grew up eating a variety of flavors native to the American South. Whether it was grilling with his father, making a pot of seafood gumbo with his Granny, or watching Julia Child and Emeril Lagasse on television, Bret’s upbringing and love for food drove him to pursue a career within the hospitality industry.


Bret earned a Bachelor of Arts in Music from the University of Southern Mississippi, at which point he worked at a local Outback Steakhouse as a server but also had the chance to dabble in the kitchen. Following college, Bret decided to seek formal culinary training which brought him to New York to enroll in the Culinary Institute of America.


After graduating from CIA in 2013, Bret joined Union Square Hospitality Group as a line cook at Gramercy Tavern before joining the opening team of Untitled in 2015. He went on to work at Blue Smoke and Jazz Standard in 2016 as a server, and then transitioned back to the kitchen as a sous chef. He was quickly promoted to executive sous chef, and then ultimately was named the Culinary Director of Blue Smoke in March 2018.

Ted Zizlsperger

Director of Operations


Ted is the Director of Operations for all Blue Smoke locations and Jazz Standard. As the Director of Operations, Ted oversees operations of all businesses within the restaurants, which includes restaurants, sporting venues, and airport terminals.

Ted first joined Union Square Hospitality Group in 2009 as the Senior Director of Venue Hospitality for all businesses within Union Square Event’s Venue Hospitality Division. Prior to joining USHG, Ted spent several years running kitchens in Cape May County, NJ until joining Patina Group to run restaurant operations which included Nick & Stef’s Steakhouse, Café Centro as well as the Stadium Grill at the US Open. Ted currently resides in New Jersey with his wife and son and spends his free time down the Jersey Shore and fishing every chance he gets.

“There are some people that if they don’t know, you can’t tell them.”

Louis Armstrong