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2010 Trio Dinner logo - A Coastal Culinary Experience

Trio Dinner Chefs Who Have Participated in the Past

Chef Mike Ford imageVidalia's at Sheraton Myrtle Beach
Chef Mike Ford
Mike Ford, executive chef at Vidalia's has faced many challenges in his career and now provides the area's only Convention Center hotel with the finest food. Chef Mike Ford began his culinary career in Jacksonville, Florida while attending College. He worked in many local area restaurants and learned a variety of cooking styles and techniques. Chef Ford began working for Interstate Hotels in 1995 as a lead cook at the Sawgrass Marriott Resort and Spa where he continued to advance and learn. Interstate Hotels is one of the largest independent hotel management companies and operates over 200 hospitality properties with more than 47,000 rooms. While working for Sawgrass Marriott, Chef Ford traveled to many properties within Interstates vast portfolio to stand in as Chef and to assist with high profile events. Through hard word, flexibility and dedication, Chef Ford worked his way to becoming the Executive Sous Chef. In 2005 Chef Ford transferred with Interstate Hotels here to Myrtle Beach to take the position of Executive Chef of the Sheraton Myrtle Beach Convention Center Hotel.

 

Chef James Clark imageWaterscapes at Marina Inn at Grande Dunes
Chef James Clark

Marina Inn at Grande Dunes Executive Chef James Clark grew up in a small South Carolina town and by high school he added cooking to his list of favorite pastimes. When it came time for college, Chef Clark attended Brevard College, until he began working in a series of small family-owned local restaurants and mastering new skills at each one. During this period, he began to develop his commitment to concentrating on three or four ingredients for each dish, focusing on them to maximize their flavors using proper cooking techniques, thereby avoiding extraneous and often palate-challenging complexity - a commitment that continues to define his style. By 1994, Chef Clark decided it was time to venture out of the south and expand his experience. He headed for Vermont and the New England Culinary Institute. After graduation, he further honed his expertise by working with well known Chef Jeff Tunks at the Windsor Court Hotel in New Orleans and at The Dining Room in Atlanta's Ritz-Carlton. He then returned to Charleston to begin a four year association with Chef Louis Osteen, at Charleston Grill and then at Louis's. When the Executive Chef position at Palette Restaurant in the Madison Hotel became available, James was intrigued by the challenge to take over a high profile restaurant in the Nations Capital. Palette's location appealed to him, "Washington has become one of the top cities in the country for fine dining and my favorite hobby is going out to see what other chefs are doing. I love to eat in restaurants." Clark and his team developed an evolving menu that reflected the seasons and utilized the freshest regional products within the surrounding areas. His creations received the 5 Star Award from the National Restaurant Science Association. He was featured in Bon Appetite Magazine for cutting edge cuisine in "Places to Eat Now". James was also guest chef at the St. Michaels Food and Wine Festival and the featured chef for the March of Dimes Celebrity Chef event in Washington DC. He received rave reviews from the Washingtonian Magazine, Where Magazine, Washington Flyer, The Hill and the Washington Times. James was then recruited to work as Chef De Cuisine at the renowned DC Coast Restaurant where he created and executed seasonal menus utilizing fresh, local produce and in season seafood. Again, the critics were pleasantly surprised at his creativity and his natural ability to marry flavors to heighten the essence of each selection. With the city experience behind him, James headed for Colorado to take on the mountains and the Casino's. He joined Isle of Capri and Colorado Central Station as Executive Chef. After these many ventures, Chef James decided to return to South Carolina and the Grand Strand. He brings his exceptional culinary savoir faire to the Marina Inn at Grande Dunes to play an integral role in placing Myrtle Beach on the map as a culinary destination.

 

Chef Peter Gennaro imageCafe Amalfi at Hilton Myrtle Beach
Chef Peter Gennaro III
Executive Chef Peter Gennaro III brings a wealth of talent and culinary expertise to the resort where he oversees all aspects of food preparation and presentation. Chef Gennaro was previously Executive Chef at Fess Parker's Doubletree Resort in Santa Barbara and Tenaya Lodge in Yosemite, California. He also served as Assistant Executive Chef at the Hotel Del Coronado in San Diego and represented the James Beard House in New York City in 1998. Chef Gennaro has more than 25 years of diverse culinary experience including positions at La Costa Resort & Spa, Fairbanks Ranch in Del Mar, The Ritz Carlton Laguna Nigel and the Marina Beach Hotel. He began his career as a chef's apprentice at the Las Vegas Hilton. Chef Gennaro graduated from the University of Nevada-Las Vegas with a bachelor's degree in Hotel & Restaurant Management. He is an active member of the Chefs de Cuisine Association and the James Beard Foundation.

 

Chef Robert Beuth imageCarriage House Club
Chef Robert Beuth
Chef Robert Beuth began his career in the culinary arts field working for his father in the family restaurants in Pittsfield, Massachusetts. He knew right away that he was going to be a chef. He enjoyed taking a bunch of ingredients and making a beautiful dish out of them. After high school he attended Berkshire Community College in Pittsfield, Massachusetts where he graduated with honors and was awarded the Massachusetts Student Culinary Excellence Award and the Massachusetts Restaurant Association Scholarship. In 1998 he was accepted into Johnson and Wales University in Providence, Rhode Island. After learning from some of the best chef's in the north east he left Rhode Island and headed back to Western Massachusetts where he accepted his first head chef's position at Bistro Zampano's in Lenox, Massachusetts. They specialized in fresh, heart healthy foods with a wide variety of fresh soups, salads and vegetables, this is where he first realized that nothing is better than fresh local products and that you should always proudly showcase the areas culinary offerings. In 2001 he moved to Myrtle Beach, S.C. and after 6 months of hard work he was promoted to the Executive Chef of The Sea Island Inn, a small family owned hotel that had a great local reputation for upscale low country dining. This was his first experience with fine dining and he fell in love with the detailing and thinking that goes on with it. He was there until the hotel was torn down in 2004 and he went back when it reopened in 2005 as the Cypress Room. In March of 2007 he accepted the Executive Chef position at the Grande Dunes Ocean Club. Through the past few years he has also become involved with our local Myrtle Beach Chapter of the American Culinary Federation. He recently received his Certified Executive Chef Certification (C.E.C.) and enjoys taking part in A.C.F. sanctioned regional cooking competitions throughout the South East. After and enjoyable 8 years of working in Myrtle Beach he is excited about his new opportunity at the Carriage House Club at Litchfield Plantation in Pawleys Island. He is looking forward to bringing his culinary ideas and beliefs to such a beautiful and historical establishment. His culinary views are pretty simple, he believes everything should be fresh and local when available, properly prepared and beautifully presented. He likes to focus on the main ingredient of a dish and pair it with appropriate sides and to let the natural flavors and taste of the dish stand out. He would like to invite everyone to come enjoy the fresh seafood, hand cut steaks and homemade bread and desserts at the Carriage House Club.

 

Chef Mike Gadson imageMarlin Restaurant at Springmaid Beach Resort
Chef Mike Gadson
Mike Gadson could be the poster child for Job Corps. Never mind that this "child" is 6'5", weighs in around 380 pounds and is 30 years old. Thirty is young to be the executive chef of oceanfront resort and conference center, Marlin Restaurant at Springmaid Beach Resort. He grew up in Sumter with his mother, Lenell Gadson, two sisters and his grandparents. On his father's side of the family he has seven brothers and five sisters. After dropping out of school in his early on, Mike decided to go back to school at age seventeen. But this time school was not high school, it was Job Corps, which is a, "...free education and training program that helps young people learn a career, earn a high school diploma or GED, and find and keep a good job." It is a federally supported program for at-risk students at least age 16. The first stop was at the Job Corps center in Bamberg, where Mike discovered he liked the culinary arts classes. He found a father surrogate in Chef Leroy Tyson, a former career military chef. After six months, seeing Mike's potential and realizing the need to get Mike out of South Carolina and away from his friends' influence, Job Corps sent the budding chef to its advanced culinary arts center in San Francisco. In San Francisco Mike worked with professional certified executive chefs and pastry chefs, and interned in high-pressure restaurants. One stint was at A. Sabella's, a legendary restaurant at Fisherman's Wharf that closed in 2007 after 87 years in business. Mike worked under Chef Todd Hansen. The young chef also met another Job Corps culinary arts student – a young Hawaiian woman named Mandy – whom he married in 2001, which was also when he graduated from the Job Corps program. Mike and Mandy Gadson came to Myrtle Beach in 2004 to work at Springmaid Resort and Conference Center. After six years, Mike is the executive chef, and Mandy is the front desk manager.

 

Steven MusolfHigh Hammock
Chef Steven Musolf

An avid reader of industry publications, Steven Musolf is the guy to turn to for cutting-edge culinary trends. As Chef de Cuisine at High Hammock, Steven brings a fresh approach to Maverick Southern cooking. The South Carolina native has always felt at home in the kitchen. As a young kid Steven was always there to lend a hand to his mother in the kitchen and could even be found preparing his own culinary creations on the stove when she was not around, much to her dismay. As Steven got older he began working front of the house jobs at various restaurants, but continuously found himself drawn to the camaraderie he witnessed among the kitchen staff. Though he was in school studying to be a respiratory therapist at the time, Steven made the decision to change career paths and enrolled in the Culinary Institute of Charleston at Trident Technical College. While pursuing his education, Steven worked as a line cook under Chef Frank Lee at Slightly Up the Creek, a former Maverick Southern Kitchens restaurant. Following graduation, Steven honed his culinary skills as Chef de Cuisine at McCrady's restaurant in downtown Charleston for six years before packing his knives and moving to California in search of new adventures. While in California, he climbed the culinary ranks at several restaurants and became Executive Chef of a Bay Area restaurant. Though enjoying his time in California, Steven had begun thinking about returning to the Lowcountry when he learned about the opportunity at High Hammock. As Chef de Cuisine at High Hammock, Steven's dedication to passing the torch of cuisine is evident. According to Executive Chef Frank Lee, "Steven has quickly attracted the kitchen and service team into his culinary orbit with an exciting new menu." When not in the kitchen, Steven can be found cycling, a hobby he picked up while living in California, or spending time with his girlfriend and three dogs.

 

Ruth's Chris ChefRuth's Chris Steak House
Chef Michael Marques

Chef Mike Marques, with Ruth's Chris Steakhouse, has over 17 years of culinary experience. Originally from Massachusetts, Marques studied at Johnson & Wales University where he received his A.S. in Culinary Arts and B.S. in Food Service Management. Clutter is Chef Marques' biggest pet peeve in a kitchen, disliking empty boxes and despising an empty stapler. His favorite cuisine is Mediterranean and his culinary hero is world-renowned Anthony Bourdain, from No Reservations. Marques has a love for peanut butter and fluff sandwiches, and enjoys cooking with his kids, daughters Kyla and Emma and son, Noah. His wife's name is Becky.

 

 

Greg Norman's Australian Grille logoGreg Norman's Australian Grille
Chef Jeff Edwards

The great golfing champion from Down Under offers an innovative cuisine and a spectacular decor that makes you feel like you're in Sydney's finest harborside restaurant. Each wonderful dish is a symphony of flavors and a tribute to artistic presentation. Chef prepared entrees execute exotic Australian fare with a touch of finesse. Dinner includes fresh wood-grilled seafood, steaks, chicken, rack of lamb and much more combined with world class flavor, ambiance and presentation that will exceed all that you would expect in a great dining experience. Our impeccable service and overall menu knowledge of our staff will be sure to impress. Our extensive wine list was given an award of excellence from Wine Spectator Magazine.

 

 

Drunken Jack's logoDrunken Jack's
Chef Casey Blake
Chef Ervin "Casey" Blake II, a Pawleys Island, South Carolina native, got his start in the restaurant business by lying about his age to get his first job bussing tables for the restaurant right next door to Drunken Jacks. He started there by bussing tables and then moved on to cooking. He then got his second job at Drunken Jacks a few years later and after 3 years became the executive chef. Casey did get some experience by taking classes from Horry-Georgetown Technical College, but most of his trade has come from hands on experience. Chef Casey has been with Drunken Jack's Restaurant for now 17 years. Casey is also the executive chef for both Drunken Jacks Restaurant and Inlet Affairs Banquet and Catering. At any given time, he is responsible for overseeing about 25-35 employees between the two companies. You can either find Casey with his hands deep in the trenches at Drunken Jacks or you may find him on an off site catering event. Casey said, "I learned everything from David McMillan. He taught me everything from ordering, inventory, scheduling and cooking." This can be quite a task for any one person, but Casey does this all with ease along with being a husband to wife Tomoka and father to four children Tyrieke, Eboni, Dionte, and Astrid. Since 2008 Chef Casey has been a member of the ACF, American Culinary Federation. He also has been a judge for the annual Pro-start cooking competition for three years. Chef Casey has gotten local recognition for winning "The Best Damn Chowder" award from the Murrells Inlet community. He also spends time going to annual food shows where he gets ideas on the latest food trends.

Travinia Italian Kitchen logoTravinia Italian Kitchen
Chef Eric Stancell
Italian Dining.



 

 

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