Chef Pete Smith
Member of the Taste of Blue Ridge Chef Advisory Board
Chef Pete is a great believer in locally source products, produce and doing everything in his power to support the local community.
Foodie Bites – Chef Pete Smith
Guilty Pleasure Snack: Any gummy candies. I’m very highly addicted to all of them!
Favorite Meal: Braised Short Ribs with Seared Foie Gras, Pimento Cheese Risotto, and glazed Rutabagas. This meal is a perfect example of my culinary personally. International flavors coming together to make one a great dish.
Most Essential Element: I can prepare almost everything in the world with my Chef Knife, Peeler, and Spoon.
One Condiment/Herb/Spice you can’t live without: Noelle’s Seasoning, Olive Oil and Basil.
Meet Chef Pete Smith
A Jacksonville native, Pete graduated from Wolfson High School in 1998 before attending the Southeast Institute of Culinary Arts in St. Augustine, Florida. Since graduating in 2000, Chef Pete has been exposed to various areas of the culinary industry, including managing a gourmet food truck and resort restaurants, owning restaurants, developing restaurants, bar/lounge design concepts, baking and pastries.
Early Culinary Career
Chef Pete went on to become a Chef de Cuisine at the young age of 22 at Restaurant Medure in Ponte Vedra Beach Florida. At a Four Diamond Restaurant he was the youngest African American chef ever to run a Four-star restaurant in the state of Florida at that time. Now with over 22 years of professional experience Chef Smith has directed many areas of Food & Beverage Divisions at the Forbes Five-Star level. His first passion of cooking is complemented by his experience which spans across the entire spectrum of the culinary industry.
Finding His Passion for Cooking
My mother took me on my first cruise when I was 10. My mother was a really good Travel Agent at the time. This cruise wasn’t really a vocation, it was a hospitality class for 3 nights and 4 days. She taught me how read a menu, order in courses, keep my elbows off the table, napkin and silverware setting, and water glass placement. The last day at the Captain’s Party, the Executive Chef was African American gentlemen from Brooklyn. If anyone has ever been on a cruise ship will know that was very rare. I looked at my mother and told her I was going to be a Chef! That trip July 19, 1990 was the beginning of my Culinary journey.
I’ve been blessed to have owned two restaurants and one catering company in my 22 year career.