I was born and raised in Chicago and moved to New York City to attend college at New York University. At the age of 18, I began waiting tables in some of NYC’s best and biggest restaurants, learning the finesse of presenting an exceptional dining experience, as well as enjoying the energy and spirit of the NYC restaurant scene. In 1994 I launched my culinary career at the Culinary Institute of America. Upon graduation, I returned to Manhattan to tackle the city’s fast and furious kitchens, from Tribeca to the Upper West Side.
With humble beginnings as a line cook at Drew Nieporent’s Layla, I developed my repertoire in Mediterranean cuisines, learning the ropes of late night cooking in the Big Apple. After many long shifts and bandaged steam burns, I began to grow into a hard nosed line cook, working through the kitchens at The Soho Grand Hotel & Oceana. Great Performances Catering was a wise sharp turn into a new culinary avenue – the catering world, where I was exposed to stellar events and NYC venues. From private dinner parties on Park Avenue to gala events at Ellis Island and the city’s museums. I Tackled the art of creating a kitchen and a fine dining experience out of raw spaces and residences within a few hours.
In 2004, I traveled to Thailand and immersed myself in its wondrous cuisine. When I returned to New York, I fortuitously landed a high profile job as Sous Chef at the Hudson Hotel. After learning how to run a hotel restaurant, I moved into the role of Executive Chef of Eatery Restaurant, where I tapped into my midwestern roots to come up with Solid American Cooking. I developed a menu that drew influences from Mexico, Morocco, the Americas and Asian pantries. With an eclectic menu, I grew an already successful restaurant into a high energy powerhouse in Hell’s Kitchen.
Next, I landed in the the open kitchen as the Executive Chef at Gastronomie 491 on the Upper West Side, returning to my mediterranean roots, I prepared modern twists on Turkish, Greek, Moroccan & Italian classics. My most recent experience was running Shelley Fireman’s ever popular Brooklyn Diner in Times Square, until I left city life for the serenity of the Hudson Valley with my wife and 8 year old twins. In Rhinebeck, I have launched Honeycomb Kitchen, where I focus on lunch and dinner meals – Delivered to your doorstep!
My ultimate goal is to bring a novel culinary experience to the Hudson Valley with creative flavors, fresh ingredients and the simple desire to nourish the neighborhood. In addition to designing meals I offer cooking classes for up to 10 people, as well as, catering intimate luncheons, dinners, cocktail parties and special occasions for up to 40 people.