Chef de Cuisine, Casa Nonna
Born in El Salvador, Atelio Ramos came to the United States when he was 18 years old. In 1994, he started cooking at Chianti under chef and owner Eric Miller, and later Scott Conant, before going to work for Patina Group. Atelio then rejoined chef Scott Conant to open I’Impero as the restaurant’s Sous Chef for four years. After a brief time working at Fiamma under chef Fabio Trabocchi, Atelio returned to work for Scott Conant at Scarpetta where he cooked alongside Scott for five years. In August 2012, Atelio joined the team at Casa Nonna as a vital component of the culinary team. In March 2015, Atelio was promoted to Chef de Cuisine where he now works with the Corporate Culinary team to offer delicious and inspiring menus of authentic Italian fare to best showcase his love and passion for cooking.
Executive Chef, BLT Bar & Grill
David Craine has been fortunate enough to work in some of New York City’s most highly regarded restaurants during their formation, including Gotham Bar and Grill, Gramercy Tavern and Union Pacific. Craine learned at a young age the value of having access to local and seasonal items, due in part to his family’s backyard where they grew some of their own vegetables and herbs. As Executive Chef at BLT Bar & Grill at W New York – Downtown, he incorporates this passion for locally-sourced ingredients into the extensive New American menu.
Chef de Cuisine, BLT Prime Doral National Resort
Originally from San Diego, the future Chef de Cuisine of BLT Prime attended his first cooking class at age ten and by fifteen was catering events and parties for the teachers in his high school. After earning a culinary arts degree at Indiana University of Pennsylvania, Chef Ward worked in renowned kitchens as L’Escalier, Chef Gordon Ramsay’s Cielo, Chef Jose Andres’ The Bazaar, and The Butcher Shop. As chef de cuisine at the recently opened BLT Prime at the newly renovated Trump National Doral Resort, Ward enjoys bringing fresh local ingredients and Florida’s distinct flavors to the modern American steakhouse’s contemporary menu.
Chef de Cuisine, BLT Steak Charlotte
With 15 years of restaurant and hospitality experience, Benjamin Miles brings his passion for local and sustainable food to BLT Steak Charlotte as Chef de Cuisine. Miles began his culinary career by working under his brother, also a chef, in various restaurants where he developed a passion for food, cooking and the restaurant industry. Miles is also the founder of the Sterling Community Garden, a project that started at Sterling Elementary School in Pineville, N.C., which teaches and involves students in growing, maintaining and harvesting a successful garden.
Chef de Cuisine, BLT Steak Waikiki
Johan Svensson was born on the small island of Torsö in Sweden. He worked his way through several positions in the restaurant industry in his homeland before making the move to the U.S. to join the team at Aquavit. After spending over 10 years honing his skills is various restaurants in both New York and London, he returned to Aquavit as executive chef in 2006. In 2009, Svensson joined BLT Steak at Trump International Hotel™ Waikiki Beach Walk® as chef de cuisine, artfully adding a global flavor to the successful French-inflected interpretation of the classic American steakhouse.
Executive Chef, The Florentine
Zachery Walrath learned to love the restaurant business at a young age. Between his father who worked for a food distribution company and his Grandfather who owned a local pizzeria, the business of food was an integral part of Zachery’s childhood. Tagging along with his dad on weekend food deliveries to local restaurants and working at his grandpa’s pizzeria offered him a behind-the-scenes glimpse into the inner workings of restaurants and he knew he wanted to be a part of it for life. In 2006, Zachery moved to Chicago from his hometown of Rock Falls, Illinois to start culinary school and graduated with his Associate’s Degree in Culinary Arts from the Cooking and Hospitality Institute of Chicago. He gained experience working at various restaurants in Chicago and in 2010 he joined the culinary team at the newly opened Wit Hotel where he worked under Chef Todd Stein before he was recruited by Stein to join him at The Florentine. For the past five years, Zachery has remained a fixture on the culinary team at The Florentine. As Executive Chef, Zachery has developed his own unique approach to the menu, adding a bit of a contemporary touch to traditional Italian cuisine and incorporating influences and inspirations he finds while dining out at various restaurants in Chicago. When he’s not in the kitchen or looking for inspiration at one of Chicago’s diverse restaurants, Zachery can be found cheering on the Chicago Cubs and the Chicago Bears, whether winning or losing.
Corporate Executive Chef, ESquared Hospitality
Throughout his culinary journey, Chef Cliff Crooks has continuously grown his cooking skills and style by apprenticing with some of the restaurant industry’s finest chefs on both the East and West coasts. Crooks, who polished his culinary talents in some of New York City’s most popular establishments, including Blue Water Grill and Gramercy Tavern, joined BLT Steak as Executive Chef in August 2010. Committed to incorporating his love for vegetables into salads, side dishes and weekly blackboard specials, Crooks creates dishes that highlight his extensive knowledge of fresh local produce, while maintaining the quality and standards that guests have come to expect from BLT Steak. After almost two years leading the kitchen at ESquared’s flagship restaurant, Chef Cliff Crooks was named Corporate Executive Chef — inspiring culinary growth across the family of restaurants.
Corporate Executive Chef, ESquared Hospitality
A graduate of the New England Culinary Institute (NECI) in Montpelier, VT, Chef Manuel Trevino has worked in famed New York kitchens including Le Cirque, Babbo, Dos Caminos, LAVO, and Travertine. Chef Trevino’s work has received a number of awards and accolades, including Adam Platt’s 2010 “Where to Eat” list for New York Magazine, three stars from Time Out New York during his time at Travertine, and a successful run on Bravo’s hit television series Top Chef. In 2014, Chef Trevino joined ESquared Hospitality as Corporate Executive Chef, where his first project was to share his vision of modern Mexican cooking at new West Village eatery Horchata, paying homage to traditional regional cuisine while incorporating unique, playful influences.