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Talent

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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CHEF RYAN ALPAUGH

Executive Sous Chef

The Sea Pines Resort

Originally from the Philadelphia-South Jersey area, Chef Ryan's culinary experience is rooted in his family's business, where he spent the early years of his career learning "the basics." He took his career to the next level soon afterward when he moved to Philadelphia to train under and work for famed French chef and restaurateur Georges Perrier at some of his signature locations - including the former Le Bec-Fin as well as Brasserie Perrier and Mia. After seven years, Chef Ryan left to work for Bobby Flay restaurants in New York City and Atlanta City.

Then in 2006, he decided to launch his own venture, choosing Sea Pines as the location to open a restaurant. But due to economic headwinds, he was forced to shutter its doors.

That's when he rerouted what he calls his "southern journey of cuisine" and diversified his culinary portfolio working as executive chef at some regional favorites, including: The Olde Pink House and 1540 Room - both in Savannah, Ga., Ela's Blu Water Grille in HHI and Alligator Grille in Bluffton.

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CHEF SEAN CARROLL

Chef de Cuisine, Links, an American Grill

The Sea Pines Resort

After working at Blue Talon Bistro and Fat Canary in his home state of Virginia, Sean Carroll pursued a formal education at Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts in Atlanta. He went on to work at restaurants in Atlanta and Augusta, Georgia, and later served as sous chef at The Inn on Biltmore Estate in Asheville and executive chef of an Italian restaurant in Williamsburg.

 

Sean's career eventually took him to Hilton Head Island where he landed positions as chef de cuisine at Alexander’s Restaurant & Wine Bar and resort executive chef of Palmetto Dunes before taking the top post at Links, an American Grill.

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CHEF AARON COX

Sous Chef

The Sea Pines Resort

Chef Aaron, Chef de Cuisine at Coast, attributes his five-star cooking expertise to his robust career experience. His résumé includes a variety of elite venues, where he developed unique menus with his signature approach to light-yet-bold, natural flavors by using only the freshest local and sustainable ingredients.

Among the highlights: Grand Teton Lodge Company in Wyoming; Harborview Hilton in Charleston S.C.; Amelia Island Plantation in Florida; ClubCorp-owned University Center Club at Florida State University, where he served as Executive Chef and Adjunct Professor of hospitality; Michael Jordan's Steakhouse at the Time Warner Cable Arena in Charlotte, N.C.; and Westin Charlotte Hotel's JP Charlotte, where he also served as Executive Chef.

As an apprentice, Chef Aaron trained from 1987 to 1989 under Certified Master Chef Hartmut Handke while attending The Greenbrier in White Sulphur Springs, W.V.

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CHEF MERRITT FAY

Sous Chef
The Sea Pines resort

Sous Chef of The Sea Pines Resort’s Links, An American Grill, Merritt Fay is a recent transplant to the area from Jacksonville, Florida. While in Jacksonville she attended Florida State College at Jacksonville, earning a degree in Culinary Management. She worked in several fine dining establishments, working her way up from line cook to sous chef and even working as pastry chef. Chef Merritt truly enjoys making memorable experiences for guests through food.

 

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CHEF BENJAMIN HARRIS

Chef de Cuisine 

The Sea Pines Resort

Sea Pines Resort Chef de Cuisine Ben Harris has honed his gastronomic skills over the last decade cooking for several acclaimed restaurants in the Carolinas. Prior to joining the culinary team at The Sea Pines Resort on Hilton Head Island, he served as executive chef of Charleston’s well-known Poogan’s Porch. As chef de cuisine, he working with Executive Chef Daniel Doyle to elevate the restaurant’s menus with sophisticated cooking techniques and unique flavor combinations. During his stint at Poogan’s Porch, the restaurant presented its inaugural James Beard House dinner. Recognized for his extraordinary talents, Harris was offered the exciting opportunity to serve as the first executive chef of Republic Garden & Lounge, a new restaurant concept in Charleston. He was soon recruited by the SERG Restaurant Group to develop menus for Poseidon on Hilton Head Island. After getting married, Harris decided to return to Raleigh to become executive chef of Midtown Grille. Partnering with local farmers and using new techniques, Harris created robust, Southern-influenced dishes, breathing new life into the 15-year-old restaurant. He left Midtown Grille in 2016 to serve as executive chef at Poogan’s Porch. In March, he moved back to Hilton Head Island with his wife, Christina, and their 2-year-old son, Malachi. As chef de cuisine at The Sea Pines Resort, Harris is sharing his passion for sustainable seafood and helping young chefs develop their skills.

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CHEF KEVIN KEOGH

Chef de Cuisine, Coast, Oceanfront Dining
The Sea Pines Resort

Chef de cuisine of The Sea Pines Resort’s Coast, Oceanfront Dining, Kevin Keogh is a self-taught chef who launched his culinary career as an apprentice at the iconic Hotel Bel-Air in Los Angeles. Originally from South Florida, he has worked in restaurants across the United States, from San Francisco to New Orleans to Boca Raton, as well as in London where he redesigned an American-style menu for the Big Easy Crab Shack. Before joining The Sea Pines Resort in February 2020, Chef Keogh served as chef de cuisine at The Club at Admirals Cove in Jupiter, Florida. As head of the Coast kitchen, he has helped develop a menu featuring simple, fresh dishes that allow the food to speak for itself.

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CHEF RYAN MOORE

Sous Chef, Fraser's Tavern
The Sea Pines Resort

Ryan Moore, sous chef at Fraser's Tavern, is a self-taught chef originally from Birmingham, Alabama. He joined The Sea Pines Resort after 14 years honing his cooking chops in  Jacksonville, Florida. Ryan is passionate about locally sourced, Southern-influenced cuisine, with a special appreciation for the history of our local foodways.
 

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CHEF MICHAEL PFEIFFER

Charlotte, NC

Mixologist Justin Hazelton has been making a name for himself in the culinary community since 2012, working his magic behind the bar of some of the most cutting-edge, cocktail-forward hotspots in the Southeast. Most recently, he joined the opening team at Leah & Louise in Charlotte, where he serves as both mixologist and bar manager. In addition, he has been contributing his mixology talents to Soul Food Sessions, the pop-up dining series that celebrates African Americans in the food and beverage industry. 

 

He previously served as a manager of 5Church in the Charlotte and Atlanta locations and helped open Sophia’s Lounge in Charlotte. He also held the roles of beverage director for FS Food Group and bar manager for SB&J.

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CHEF JOE TRUEX

Executive Chef, Pursell Farms
Sylacauga, AL

A highly credentialed chef with vast experience at top restaurants in Switzerland, New York and Atlanta, Joe Truex currently serves as executive chef of Pursell Farms, a 3,200-acre resort located in the foothills of Alabama. The Louisiana native studied at The Culinary Institute of America in New York and trained under Chef Daniel Boulud at NYC’s Le Cirque, landing the role of chef de partie at the Swissotel Le Plaza in Basel, Switzerland, upon his graduation.

He returned to New York to work at The Peninsula Hotel, later opening The Brooklyn Diner and The Redeye Grill and taking the post of executive chef at The Cambridge Hotel in Cambridge, Massachusetts. But it was the 2006 opening of his Atlanta restaurant, Repast, that catapulted him to the national culinary stage. Esquire Magazine named it one of the Best New Restaurants in America, garnering Truex an invitation from Martha Stewart to cook on her television show.
 

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CHEF SAM WOODFILL

Chef de Cuisine
The Sea Pines Resort

Chef Sam Woodfill started his culinary career at the St. Regis Hotel in Southern California, followed by two summers working on Catalina Island. He then moved to Denver, Colorado, to attend Johnson & Wales University. While in Denver, he worked for the Hilton Denver Inverness, award-winning catering company Catering by Design, and Benihana, where he learned to flip shrimp and make onion volcanos. Ready for warmer weather, Sam took his culinary talents to the Lowcountry and now serves as chef de cuisine at The Sea Pines Resort.
 

 
 
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The Sea Pines Resort
32 Greenwood Drive
Hilton Head Island, SC 29928
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