A native of Detroit Michigan, Brent moved to Phoenix in 2005 needing a change of scenery. He enrolled in Scottsdale Community College culinary arts program to enhance his knowledge and open doors. After graduating, Brent landed a job at The Boulders resort, where he linked up with Stephen Jones, who would influence his Southern cooking style. He followed Jones to help open Blue Hound Kitchen & Cocktails at the Hotel Palomar and then a few years later helped open Desoto Central Market. Brent received his first opportunity to showcase his style when he came aboard The Marriott Buttes to run their fine dining restaurant, Top of the Rock, as Chef de Cuisine. Looking to expand his knowledge, he jumped at the opportunity to work at Crudo, where he honed his skill at minimalist Italian cuisine. He then switched back to his southern style upon taking over kitchen operations at Okra Cookhouse. After his stint at Okra, he headed to Charleston, South Carolina to take on a consulting role and dig deeper in to southern cuisine and culture. He jumped at the opportunity, when Jacob Cutino offered him Director of Production for Homeboys Hot Sauce, to return back home to Phoenix. Upon returning, he's jumped right back in to helping other chefs and pursuing his own cooking passions. Follow @Tnerb14 to see where he's chowing down in his free time.
Donald Hawk has been as close to a valley native as possible. Born in South Korea, but adopted by a Polish / German family, he has been in the valley his whole life. After he enrolled in the Arizona Culinary Institute in 2005, Donald landed his externship with James Porter at Tapino Wine Bar. Shortly afterward he landed a break and started working for his mentor Claudio Urchouli, at various spots (Prado, Pizzeria Bianco, Noca), where his love of Italian with a focus on simplicity became apparent. After a brief stint with Bernie Kantak at Citizen Public House and Jeff Kraus at Crepe Bar, Donald moved to Portland Oregon to work for Jenn Louis at Lincoln restaurant. Donald enjoyed the Italian influence and farm to table approach. Upon his return, he signed up for a second stint at Crepe Bar. Bernie Kantak persuaded him to come aboard The Gladly and head up the new Raw Bar featuring Donnie's creations. Drop by and say hi to @snackfriedrice and get a bite from one of his ever evolving specials at The Gladly.