Savor the Season 2016
Caliza Pool at Alys Beach

THURS, November 3rd 2016
5:30PM - 8:30PM
TICKETS STILL AVAILABLE AT DOOR

Purchase Event Tickets
welcome

The Highly Anticipated Event Returns!

Welcome to the 7th Annual “Savor the Season” event at Caliza Pool in Alys Beach, benefiting the Taylor Haugen Foundation.

This year’s event will take place on THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 3rd 2016 from 5:30-8:30 p.m.

Tickets are $75.00 ONLINE, and $85.00 at the door!

The Savor the Season event is a truly unforgettable event happening once per year at the beautiful Caliza Pool in Alys Beach. With the success and acclaim of previous years we are happy to announce the 7th Year for this event!

We invite you to come and enjoy the wine tasting, silent and live auctions, and delicious gourmet cuisine made by the finest local chefs from Panama City to Destin, Florida.

sponsors

Our Fantastic Sponsors

A very special thank you to all our Sponsors! Because of your continued support we continue to outfit teams. There are more and more requests everyday and we are so thankful to all of you!

Diamond Level Sponsors

Raymond James
St. Joe Community Foundation
Bluewater Orthopedics
Neuromicro Spine Destin

Platinum Level Sponsors

Alys Beach
Scenic Sotheby's Reality

Accommodation Partners

Resort Quest/Wyndham properties

SPECIAL: Get 20% off a stay of 2 or more nights at any of Resort Quest’s eligible rentals listed on our website for the Beaches of South Walton. Offer is valid when you travel between November 1 and November 6, 2016 by calling 855-272-6432 or booking online using Promo Code: SAVOR by November 3, 2016.

Click here for Booking

 


Gold Level Sponsors

Gulf PowerYour Friend at the BeachLouisiana Hemotology Oncology AssociatesThe Beach GroupJanice Busovne Keller WilliamsRomair ConstructionPeggy Groppert Group Southern Wine and Spirits


In Kind Sponsors

Costa EnterprisesEC MagazineElite WebscapesDestin MagazineVIE MagazineThe 30A ReviewH & M Event RentalsSunshine ShuttleMichael J Thomas30A.comFaceTime Photobooth DestinAround Town Photography Rhonda

purchase-tickets

Purchase Tickets

ONLINE TICKET SALES ARE CLOSED. STILL NEED TICKETS? THEY CAN STILL BE PURCHASED AT THE CALIZA POOL

.

If you have any questions please feel free to reach out to us via the contact form at the bottom of the page.

chefs

Chefs & Menus

Delicious gourmet cuisine made by the finest local chefs from Panama City to Destin, Florida.

 Chef Dan Vargo

Chef Dan Vargo

Seagars Prime Steaks and Seafood
Chef Dan Vargo joined the Seagar’s Prime Steaks & Seafood culinary team in April 2012. Vargo, a native of Maryland, was introduced to the culinary world in Destin FL where he made the decision to pursue his passion for food. Vargo has been in the culinary industry for the last 13 years, during which time he traveled the world in search of his culinary style, aptly shaped by his journey.

DISH: 48 oz. Porterhouse Carved | WINE PAIRING: Simi Landslide Alexander Valley, Cabernet 2013
Vargo brings Baltimore’s traditional and historical influences, Martha’s Vineyard’s emphasis on organic produce and seasonal seafood, and the Ritz Carlton’s world-class standards for fine dining and excellence in service to the Seagar’s experience.
Chef Drew Dzejak

Chef Drew Dzejak

Caliza Restaurant
Drew joined Alys Beach in August 2016 as Executive Chef to oversee all food operations.
Prior to joining Alys Beach, Drew spent 11 years in Charleston at the Charleston Place Hotel, The Woodlands Resort and Inn and the Sienna Restaurant. He then served as Executive Chef at the Windsor Court Hotel in New Orleans for 4 years.

DISH: Chargrilled Octopus | WINE PAIRING: Franciscan Cuvee Savage Carneros Chardonnay 2013
After New Orleans, he served as Executive Sous Chef and Club Executive Chef at The Inn at Palmetto Bluff. Drew holds a B.S. Degree from Johnson and Wales University.
Drew and his wife Stephanie have two children, Aurora and John. When’s he’s away from the kitchen, he enjoys cooking at home with the kids, gardening, and playing with his classic cars…a 1965 VW bug and a 1978 Trans Am.

Vision for Alys Beach:
I see Alys Beach as a true luxury resort town with all of the best of both worlds. The privacy of a small town, the connection members can make among themselves, with high end luxury amenities. We are here to create life long memories for the members and guest that stay at Alys Beach. I see food and beverage reaching new highs to engage and draw people to the best spot on 30A.

Chef Mark Eichin

Chef Mark Eichin

Restaurant Paradis
Restaurant Paradis is a small fine dining restaurant, with a comfortable and inviting full service lounge. Nestled in the beautiful coastal town of Rosemary Beach, Florida, you’ll find this hidden gem that loyal customers like to call home. Evoking a warm neighborhood feel, the dining area features an understated wine country elegance.

DISH: BBQ Pork Belly | WINE PAIRING: Wild Horse Cheval Sauvage Santa Barbara, Pinot Noir 2012
Open for dinner, Paradis is committed to serving fresh seasonal ingredients, which celebrate local produce and an abundance of fresh Gulf seafood, along with prime steaks and fine wines.

Paradis welcomes wedding receptions, rehearsal dinners, and all celebrations, both intimate and large. Throughout the year, Paradis also offers select wine dinners and tastings from some of California’s most exclusive vintners.

With a focus on coastal cuisine, Paradis draws from the rich flavors of the coastal area as well as various other regions to create its innovative and tantalizing dishes. Paradis’ chefs have a flair for using common ingredients, but with a unique twist. Dedicated to sourcing locally grown products so the menu changes with the seasons, Restaurant Paradis prides itself on providing customers with new dishes to look forward to year round.

Whether you’re strolling by in your flip flops and shorts or dressed up for a night out on the town, our staff will welcome you with smiling faces. Maybe you’ve just dusted the sand off your feet and realized its dinner and you’re too relaxed to go home and cook. Come on in to Restaurant Paradis where we can meet your leisurely or more sophisticated appetite!

Chef Chris Mongogna

Chef Chris Mongogna

NOLA Boiling Company
Chef Chris Mongogna cooks with a passion and excitement matching his engaging personality. At the age of thirteen, the self-taught New Orleans native cooked his first meal on a Monday, red beans and rice. Helping his mother finish while she was working, he started experimenting with his own spices, tweaking the dish to the enjoyment of his family.

DISH: BBQ Shrimp & Grits | DISH: Saved Red Blend California
It’s this type of enjoyment that serves as the basis of why he’s always wanted to be a chef. He appreciates the fact that food is nostalgic, can spark memories of childhood, or experiences of diners’ past. Chris owes a lot of his love for cooking to his mother and two grandmothers who specialized in Italian food, New Orleans classics, and Southern Country. Chris quickly moved on to helping his Grammy during Sunday dinner, grating cheese and asking if he could help with EVERYTHING. After a few slaps on his hand from a wooden spoon as he dabbed his bread into the red gravy, he was soon stuffing artichokes and became a full-time helper on Sundays.

Chris came to the Emerald Coast after Hurricane Katrina where he held the position as Executive Chef of Fire at Gulf Place. The Marigny gives Chris a chance to return the the dishes of his youth in New Orleans, offering a laid back family atmosphere with delicious food from his past. “Pure Creole” is a concept of Louisiana cuisine that can only come from a native. Chris believes that food should be a celebration and shared with family over memories, while creating new ones for the future. Chris hopes that The Marigny can be a “Sunday dinner” spot for many families to share good times over great food.

Chris notes Carl Schaubhut, formally of Commander’s Palace and current Executive Chef at Cafe Adelaide in New Orleans, as his mentor and friend who taught him not only ideas about how to run a kitchen, but about the restaurant business as a whole. His influences also include Kerry Simon and Tim Love. The first cookbook he received from Grammy was that of native New Orleanian Frank Davis, and Emeril Lagasse holds a special place as Chris followed him in the early days before celebrity chefs became en vogue.

As if Executive Chef and Partner isn’t enough, when he does get some time away from work Chris enjoys playing golf, watching sports, and spending time with his two daughters, Karley 14, and Sophia 10. Chris has started the girls early, carrying on the family tradition of a love of cooking, they both helped in building The Marigny, and they sprint to the kitchen when it’s time to stuff artichokes.

Chef Heidi McAnulla

Chef Heidi McAnulla

Bake My Day Destin
Chef Heidi, the owner and a pastry chef for over a decade, believes in utilizing only the best ingredients possible. By making everything from scratch our creations not only look good but taste even better. We feel that baking is not about short cuts, but taking the time to do something memorable.

DISH: COMING SOON! | WINE: Ruffino Glera Italian Prosecco
Bake My Day provides special occasion cakes and pastries,such as wedding and birthday cakes. We alsoprovide desserts to local restaurants, as well as to the public. We make everything from scratch, with the best ingredients available.
Chef Ruston Johnson

Chef Ruston Johnson

Ruth's Chris Steak House
Chef Ruston Johnson was born in St. Cloud, Minnesota. At the tender age of four his family moved south to Henderson, Kentucky to escape the harsh Northern winters. His interest in cooking originated there while watching cooking shows at the age of fourteen.

DISH: Crabtini | WINE PAIRING: Kim Crawford “Spit Fire” Malborough Sauvignon Blanc 2015
Before Ruston started his culinary career he worked for his dad in construction. “I could see the happiness in his eyes as he built a dream house for people. I liked seeing people happy when you do a job and do it right and what better way than cooking. I get to see happy faces when I cook,” says Ruston. His first kitchen experience was as a teenager at a few fast food restaurants and a steak house.

Relocating to Tallahassee, Florida in his senior year of high school Ruston enlisted in the United States Coast Guard. Stationed in Michigan on a small icebreaker on the Great Lakes he replaced the ship’s chef while he was on vacation. The Captain was so impressed with Russ that he told chef to go back to cooking school and replaced him with Ruston. Later, Ruston became the chef of the Polar Sea a larger Coast Guard cutter. While sailing the seven seas he passed through the Panama Canal three times and traveled the world visiting 12 countries along the way.

After his service with the Coast Guard, Ruston attended Johnson & Wales in Norfolk, Virginia. Upon graduation he interned at the Elephant Walk in the Sandestin Resort. Chef Johnson worked at some of the most well known restaurants along the Emerald Coast including the Sandestin Hilton, Frangista, Cafe Grazie, and Louisiana Lagniappe. Chef Johnson started with the famous New Orleans based Ruth’s Chris Steak House in Destin, FL in 2006 where he remains the Executive Chef.

Chef Christopher Holbrook

Chef Christopher Holbrook

CHL Signature Catering of 30-A
In his career, Holbrook has trained under three European chefs — from England, France, and Ireland – but credits local luminaries like Tim Creehan for giving serving as valuable mentors as well.

DISH: Foie Shrimp Sushi Spring Rolls with Hot Sake Quail Egg Shots | WINE PAIRING: Ty Ku Sake Junmai Silver Nara Japan
“That’s one of the things I love about my job now, is the opportunity to work with young chefs and pass my knowledge and techniques on to them,” Holbrook said. “The first chef I worked for, he gave me copies of all his CIA (Culinary Institute of America) books, all his notes and took me to a place where I was inspired to serve great food. It’s a rewarding situation to be able to give that back. He graduated in 1998 from Johnson & Wales University from their culinary arts program.

Before becoming the general manager of Another Broken Egg, Holbrook was the executive chef at Infiniti Dining Group in Atlanta, responsible for developing Sage Woodfire Tavern into a Jezebel top 100 Restaurant, which it hadn’t achieved in its first four years of business, as well as being the chef and owner of Signature Catering in Atlanta.

He has served as a consulting chef for an exclusive club in the Bahamas, as a private chef for New Orleans mogul Al Copeland and Ford Motor Company executive Michael Dingman. He has also worked in landmark restaurants Beaumont’s and Kiawah Island Resort in Charleston, S.C., where he had the opportunity to cater the 1997 World Cup of Golf and 1998 Federation Cup of Tennis, as well as personally cook for President George W. Bush. Locally, he has worked at many fine Destin restaurants, from Beachwalk Café to Rutherford’s 465.

“I’ve had some wonderful opportunities that I wouldn’t trade for the world, to work with other people who really care about food and want to create great food,” Holbrook said. But one of the greatest lessons that he’s learned is that it isn’t all about just the passion for food, being successful in the culinary industry is also about being good at business. Holbrook has also built a solid reputation as a “fixer,” someone who can come in and deliver consistency and efficiency, who can reduce food costs while improving a restaurant’s prestige.

So now he has focused on bringing his talents to private guests, couple’s wanting the best for their special day, and working with many concierge’s to provide their guests that special occasion. “Working for myself again and focusing on the guests, is rewarding beyond belief on so many levels. Now I can bring the best restaurant on the coast right to your house and the food is executed before your eyes, which is something I’m very proud of.”

Chef Heyward McKenzie

Chef Heyward McKenzie

Culinary Catering 365
Chef and Owner, Heyward McKenzie hasn’t always been one of the best caterers here in Fort Walton Beach. He actually honed his skills and became a master prior to ever opening the doors of Culinary Catering 365.

DISH: Iron Skillet Grouper Cheeks | WINE PAIRING: 30A, Columbia Valley Chardonnay
Growing up in Columbia SC, Heyward, like many chefs do, got his start in his grandmother’s kitchen. His love of creating culinary delights was further fostered through his rich southern heritage and it is here that he realized that a proper meal and its accoutrements were the glue that brought friends and family closer together.

His first professional immersion into the culinary world occurred at a local Greek Restaurant. Of course washing dishes and prepping salads were only the beginning. Heyward went on to attend one of the country’s most Prestigious Schools for his craft, JOHNSON & WALES UNIVERSITY. While working two different jobs, he worked his way through culinary school.

Working as a Sous Chef in Charleston, SC at Southend Brewery, he began to hone his newly acquired skills and then later joined a talented team of chefs and opened Hank’s Seafood, which was voted into AMERICA ‘S TOP TWENTY-FIVE BEST NEW RESTAURANTS. Heyward’s career along the Emerald Coast, Fort Walton Beach and Destin includes variety of notable restaurants like The Beach Walk Cafe, Rutherfords 465, and Zampieri’s.

Heyward is also the Chef at Shalimar United Methodist Church.

Chef Todd Misener

Chef Todd Misener

Stinky's Fish Camp
Chef Todd Misener took his first restaurant job asa prep cook in a small family restaurant at the age of fourteen. Working in multiple restaurants throughout high school, he discovered his passion for fine food and creativity at a young age. He was accepted to the Culinary Institute of America and graduated with awards in 1989.
DISH: Spicy Boudin dish | WINE PAIRING: Jean – Luc Colombo La Dame Rouet, Provence Rose 2015
He immediately accepted a job with the late Master Chef, Jack Shoop in New Jersey to continue honing his love for the craft of cooking. Chef Todd spent the next 17 years working side by side with Chef Shoop studying a variety of ethnic cuisines and styles of cooking including Italian, German, Asian and foods of the Mediterranean but focusing on the French classics. His Career has taken him to New York, New Jersey, Atlanta, Boca Raton, Tallahassee, and to the panhandle of Florida, where he has planted his feet since 2004. Chef Todd partnered with Chefs Jim Richard and Brannon Janca in 2007 to open Stinky’s Fish Camp in Santa Rosa Beach, Florida. He also currently is the chef and director for Blue Mountain Catering Company. Chef Todd spends his spare time with his wife and their five wonderful children. Todd is a lifelong student of fine cuisine and pursuit of excellence.
Chef Camille Withall

Chef Camille Withall

George's at Alys Beach
Camille Withall was destined to work in the culinary industry. As a child in Manila, Philippines, Camille shadowed her mother in the kitchen preparing meals for her parents and three sisters. Those early lessons proved useful during her eight-year tenure as a chef for private clubs, resorts, and independent fine dining establishments in the U.S. and Philippines.

DISH: Burnt Ends Tacos with Caremelized Shiitake Ketchup and Apple Chow Chow | WINE PAIRING: Ravenswood Belloni Russian River, Zinfandel 2012
After graduating with a degree in Commerce Advertising Management from De La Salle University in Manila, Camille worked for her father’s agrichemical company handling human resources, administration, and marketing. Camille quickly discovered that the corporate world wasn’t for her. She decided to enroll in the culinary arts program at the American Hospitality Academy in Manila, pursuing her passion for food.

In 2008, Camille traversed the Pacific for an internship in the kitchen at the Sandestin Golf & Beach Resort in Destin, Florida. There, she gained invaluable kitchen experience including pastry, banquets, casual club fare, and fine dining. After her internship, she took a job as a line cook at Restaurant Fire in Grayton Beach, Florida, and worked her way up to Executive Chef. The years spent at Fire taught her about Napa-style, farm-to-table cuisine with a strong Southern influence. Camille joined the George’s family as Sous Chef in January of 2014 and is now Executive Chef. When she’s not in the kitchen, Camille enjoys reading, going to the beach, and traveling the world to learn about food.

 Chef Dan Vargo

Chef Dan Vargo

Seagars Prime Steaks and Seafood
Chef Dan Vargo joined the Seagar’s Prime Steaks & Seafood culinary team in April 2012. Vargo, a native of Maryland, was introduced to the culinary world in Destin FL where he made the decision to pursue his passion for food. Vargo has been in the culinary industry for the last 13 years, during which time he traveled the world in search of his culinary style, aptly shaped by his journey.

DISH: 48 oz. Porterhouse Carved | WINE PAIRING: Simi Landslide Alexander Valley, Cabernet 2013
Vargo brings Baltimore’s traditional and historical influences, Martha’s Vineyard’s emphasis on organic produce and seasonal seafood, and the Ritz Carlton’s world-class standards for fine dining and excellence in service to the Seagar’s experience.
Chef Drew Dzejak

Chef Drew Dzejak

Caliza Restaurant
Drew joined Alys Beach in August 2016 as Executive Chef to oversee all food operations.
Prior to joining Alys Beach, Drew spent 11 years in Charleston at the Charleston Place Hotel, The Woodlands Resort and Inn and the Sienna Restaurant. He then served as Executive Chef at the Windsor Court Hotel in New Orleans for 4 years.

DISH: Chargrilled Octopus | WINE PAIRING: Franciscan Cuvee Savage Carneros Chardonnay 2013
After New Orleans, he served as Executive Sous Chef and Club Executive Chef at The Inn at Palmetto Bluff. Drew holds a B.S. Degree from Johnson and Wales University.
Drew and his wife Stephanie have two children, Aurora and John. When’s he’s away from the kitchen, he enjoys cooking at home with the kids, gardening, and playing with his classic cars…a 1965 VW bug and a 1978 Trans Am.

Vision for Alys Beach:
I see Alys Beach as a true luxury resort town with all of the best of both worlds. The privacy of a small town, the connection members can make among themselves, with high end luxury amenities. We are here to create life long memories for the members and guest that stay at Alys Beach. I see food and beverage reaching new highs to engage and draw people to the best spot on 30A.

Chef Mark Eichin

Chef Mark Eichin

Restaurant Paradis
Restaurant Paradis is a small fine dining restaurant, with a comfortable and inviting full service lounge. Nestled in the beautiful coastal town of Rosemary Beach, Florida, you’ll find this hidden gem that loyal customers like to call home. Evoking a warm neighborhood feel, the dining area features an understated wine country elegance.

DISH: BBQ Pork Belly | WINE PAIRING: Wild Horse Cheval Sauvage Santa Barbara, Pinot Noir 2012
Open for dinner, Paradis is committed to serving fresh seasonal ingredients, which celebrate local produce and an abundance of fresh Gulf seafood, along with prime steaks and fine wines.

Paradis welcomes wedding receptions, rehearsal dinners, and all celebrations, both intimate and large. Throughout the year, Paradis also offers select wine dinners and tastings from some of California’s most exclusive vintners.

With a focus on coastal cuisine, Paradis draws from the rich flavors of the coastal area as well as various other regions to create its innovative and tantalizing dishes. Paradis’ chefs have a flair for using common ingredients, but with a unique twist. Dedicated to sourcing locally grown products so the menu changes with the seasons, Restaurant Paradis prides itself on providing customers with new dishes to look forward to year round.

Whether you’re strolling by in your flip flops and shorts or dressed up for a night out on the town, our staff will welcome you with smiling faces. Maybe you’ve just dusted the sand off your feet and realized its dinner and you’re too relaxed to go home and cook. Come on in to Restaurant Paradis where we can meet your leisurely or more sophisticated appetite!

Chef Chris Mongogna

Chef Chris Mongogna

NOLA Boiling Company
Chef Chris Mongogna cooks with a passion and excitement matching his engaging personality. At the age of thirteen, the self-taught New Orleans native cooked his first meal on a Monday, red beans and rice. Helping his mother finish while she was working, he started experimenting with his own spices, tweaking the dish to the enjoyment of his family.

DISH: BBQ Shrimp & Grits | DISH: Saved Red Blend California
It’s this type of enjoyment that serves as the basis of why he’s always wanted to be a chef. He appreciates the fact that food is nostalgic, can spark memories of childhood, or experiences of diners’ past. Chris owes a lot of his love for cooking to his mother and two grandmothers who specialized in Italian food, New Orleans classics, and Southern Country. Chris quickly moved on to helping his Grammy during Sunday dinner, grating cheese and asking if he could help with EVERYTHING. After a few slaps on his hand from a wooden spoon as he dabbed his bread into the red gravy, he was soon stuffing artichokes and became a full-time helper on Sundays.

Chris came to the Emerald Coast after Hurricane Katrina where he held the position as Executive Chef of Fire at Gulf Place. The Marigny gives Chris a chance to return the the dishes of his youth in New Orleans, offering a laid back family atmosphere with delicious food from his past. “Pure Creole” is a concept of Louisiana cuisine that can only come from a native. Chris believes that food should be a celebration and shared with family over memories, while creating new ones for the future. Chris hopes that The Marigny can be a “Sunday dinner” spot for many families to share good times over great food.

Chris notes Carl Schaubhut, formally of Commander’s Palace and current Executive Chef at Cafe Adelaide in New Orleans, as his mentor and friend who taught him not only ideas about how to run a kitchen, but about the restaurant business as a whole. His influences also include Kerry Simon and Tim Love. The first cookbook he received from Grammy was that of native New Orleanian Frank Davis, and Emeril Lagasse holds a special place as Chris followed him in the early days before celebrity chefs became en vogue.

As if Executive Chef and Partner isn’t enough, when he does get some time away from work Chris enjoys playing golf, watching sports, and spending time with his two daughters, Karley 14, and Sophia 10. Chris has started the girls early, carrying on the family tradition of a love of cooking, they both helped in building The Marigny, and they sprint to the kitchen when it’s time to stuff artichokes.

Chef Heidi McAnulla

Chef Heidi McAnulla

Bake My Day Destin
Chef Heidi, the owner and a pastry chef for over a decade, believes in utilizing only the best ingredients possible. By making everything from scratch our creations not only look good but taste even better. We feel that baking is not about short cuts, but taking the time to do something memorable.

DISH: COMING SOON! | WINE: Ruffino Glera Italian Prosecco
Bake My Day provides special occasion cakes and pastries,such as wedding and birthday cakes. We alsoprovide desserts to local restaurants, as well as to the public. We make everything from scratch, with the best ingredients available.
Chef Ruston Johnson

Chef Ruston Johnson

Ruth's Chris Steak House
Chef Ruston Johnson was born in St. Cloud, Minnesota. At the tender age of four his family moved south to Henderson, Kentucky to escape the harsh Northern winters. His interest in cooking originated there while watching cooking shows at the age of fourteen.

DISH: Crabtini | WINE PAIRING: Kim Crawford “Spit Fire” Malborough Sauvignon Blanc 2015
Before Ruston started his culinary career he worked for his dad in construction. “I could see the happiness in his eyes as he built a dream house for people. I liked seeing people happy when you do a job and do it right and what better way than cooking. I get to see happy faces when I cook,” says Ruston. His first kitchen experience was as a teenager at a few fast food restaurants and a steak house.

Relocating to Tallahassee, Florida in his senior year of high school Ruston enlisted in the United States Coast Guard. Stationed in Michigan on a small icebreaker on the Great Lakes he replaced the ship’s chef while he was on vacation. The Captain was so impressed with Russ that he told chef to go back to cooking school and replaced him with Ruston. Later, Ruston became the chef of the Polar Sea a larger Coast Guard cutter. While sailing the seven seas he passed through the Panama Canal three times and traveled the world visiting 12 countries along the way.

After his service with the Coast Guard, Ruston attended Johnson & Wales in Norfolk, Virginia. Upon graduation he interned at the Elephant Walk in the Sandestin Resort. Chef Johnson worked at some of the most well known restaurants along the Emerald Coast including the Sandestin Hilton, Frangista, Cafe Grazie, and Louisiana Lagniappe. Chef Johnson started with the famous New Orleans based Ruth’s Chris Steak House in Destin, FL in 2006 where he remains the Executive Chef.

Chef Christopher Holbrook

Chef Christopher Holbrook

CHL Signature Catering of 30-A
In his career, Holbrook has trained under three European chefs — from England, France, and Ireland – but credits local luminaries like Tim Creehan for giving serving as valuable mentors as well.

DISH: Foie Shrimp Sushi Spring Rolls with Hot Sake Quail Egg Shots | WINE PAIRING: Ty Ku Sake Junmai Silver Nara Japan
“That’s one of the things I love about my job now, is the opportunity to work with young chefs and pass my knowledge and techniques on to them,” Holbrook said. “The first chef I worked for, he gave me copies of all his CIA (Culinary Institute of America) books, all his notes and took me to a place where I was inspired to serve great food. It’s a rewarding situation to be able to give that back. He graduated in 1998 from Johnson & Wales University from their culinary arts program.

Before becoming the general manager of Another Broken Egg, Holbrook was the executive chef at Infiniti Dining Group in Atlanta, responsible for developing Sage Woodfire Tavern into a Jezebel top 100 Restaurant, which it hadn’t achieved in its first four years of business, as well as being the chef and owner of Signature Catering in Atlanta.

He has served as a consulting chef for an exclusive club in the Bahamas, as a private chef for New Orleans mogul Al Copeland and Ford Motor Company executive Michael Dingman. He has also worked in landmark restaurants Beaumont’s and Kiawah Island Resort in Charleston, S.C., where he had the opportunity to cater the 1997 World Cup of Golf and 1998 Federation Cup of Tennis, as well as personally cook for President George W. Bush. Locally, he has worked at many fine Destin restaurants, from Beachwalk Café to Rutherford’s 465.

“I’ve had some wonderful opportunities that I wouldn’t trade for the world, to work with other people who really care about food and want to create great food,” Holbrook said. But one of the greatest lessons that he’s learned is that it isn’t all about just the passion for food, being successful in the culinary industry is also about being good at business. Holbrook has also built a solid reputation as a “fixer,” someone who can come in and deliver consistency and efficiency, who can reduce food costs while improving a restaurant’s prestige.

So now he has focused on bringing his talents to private guests, couple’s wanting the best for their special day, and working with many concierge’s to provide their guests that special occasion. “Working for myself again and focusing on the guests, is rewarding beyond belief on so many levels. Now I can bring the best restaurant on the coast right to your house and the food is executed before your eyes, which is something I’m very proud of.”

Chef Heyward McKenzie

Chef Heyward McKenzie

Culinary Catering 365
Chef and Owner, Heyward McKenzie hasn’t always been one of the best caterers here in Fort Walton Beach. He actually honed his skills and became a master prior to ever opening the doors of Culinary Catering 365.

DISH: Iron Skillet Grouper Cheeks | WINE PAIRING: 30A, Columbia Valley Chardonnay
Growing up in Columbia SC, Heyward, like many chefs do, got his start in his grandmother’s kitchen. His love of creating culinary delights was further fostered through his rich southern heritage and it is here that he realized that a proper meal and its accoutrements were the glue that brought friends and family closer together.

His first professional immersion into the culinary world occurred at a local Greek Restaurant. Of course washing dishes and prepping salads were only the beginning. Heyward went on to attend one of the country’s most Prestigious Schools for his craft, JOHNSON & WALES UNIVERSITY. While working two different jobs, he worked his way through culinary school.

Working as a Sous Chef in Charleston, SC at Southend Brewery, he began to hone his newly acquired skills and then later joined a talented team of chefs and opened Hank’s Seafood, which was voted into AMERICA ‘S TOP TWENTY-FIVE BEST NEW RESTAURANTS. Heyward’s career along the Emerald Coast, Fort Walton Beach and Destin includes variety of notable restaurants like The Beach Walk Cafe, Rutherfords 465, and Zampieri’s.

Heyward is also the Chef at Shalimar United Methodist Church.

Chef Todd Misener

Chef Todd Misener

Stinky's Fish Camp
Chef Todd Misener took his first restaurant job asa prep cook in a small family restaurant at the age of fourteen. Working in multiple restaurants throughout high school, he discovered his passion for fine food and creativity at a young age. He was accepted to the Culinary Institute of America and graduated with awards in 1989.
DISH: Spicy Boudin dish | WINE PAIRING: Jean – Luc Colombo La Dame Rouet, Provence Rose 2015
He immediately accepted a job with the late Master Chef, Jack Shoop in New Jersey to continue honing his love for the craft of cooking. Chef Todd spent the next 17 years working side by side with Chef Shoop studying a variety of ethnic cuisines and styles of cooking including Italian, German, Asian and foods of the Mediterranean but focusing on the French classics. His Career has taken him to New York, New Jersey, Atlanta, Boca Raton, Tallahassee, and to the panhandle of Florida, where he has planted his feet since 2004. Chef Todd partnered with Chefs Jim Richard and Brannon Janca in 2007 to open Stinky’s Fish Camp in Santa Rosa Beach, Florida. He also currently is the chef and director for Blue Mountain Catering Company. Chef Todd spends his spare time with his wife and their five wonderful children. Todd is a lifelong student of fine cuisine and pursuit of excellence.
Chef Camille Withall

Chef Camille Withall

George's at Alys Beach
Camille Withall was destined to work in the culinary industry. As a child in Manila, Philippines, Camille shadowed her mother in the kitchen preparing meals for her parents and three sisters. Those early lessons proved useful during her eight-year tenure as a chef for private clubs, resorts, and independent fine dining establishments in the U.S. and Philippines.

DISH: Burnt Ends Tacos with Caremelized Shiitake Ketchup and Apple Chow Chow | WINE PAIRING: Ravenswood Belloni Russian River, Zinfandel 2012
After graduating with a degree in Commerce Advertising Management from De La Salle University in Manila, Camille worked for her father’s agrichemical company handling human resources, administration, and marketing. Camille quickly discovered that the corporate world wasn’t for her. She decided to enroll in the culinary arts program at the American Hospitality Academy in Manila, pursuing her passion for food.

In 2008, Camille traversed the Pacific for an internship in the kitchen at the Sandestin Golf & Beach Resort in Destin, Florida. There, she gained invaluable kitchen experience including pastry, banquets, casual club fare, and fine dining. After her internship, she took a job as a line cook at Restaurant Fire in Grayton Beach, Florida, and worked her way up to Executive Chef. The years spent at Fire taught her about Napa-style, farm-to-table cuisine with a strong Southern influence. Camille joined the George’s family as Sous Chef in January of 2014 and is now Executive Chef. When she’s not in the kitchen, Camille enjoys reading, going to the beach, and traveling the world to learn about food.

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