Ferndale Native Named Executive Chef at Townsend Hotel
Drew Sayes says he's a supporter of local farms, regional cuisine and sustainable practices.
The food at the Townsend Hotel will soon have a new face behind it, with the recent appointment of Drew Sayes as the Birmingham luxury hotel's new executive chef.
Originally from Ferndale, the 33-year-old Sayes will be responsible for the creation and execution of the fine dining menu at the Townsend's Rugby Grille. Sayes will also oversee the menus for the hotel's room service operation, afternoon tea service and catering.
Sayes replaces former executive chef, Jim Bologna, who served in that position for more than four years. Bologna is now the corporate chef for Opus One Companies.
"We couldn't be more pleased with the addition of Chef Drew to the Townsend's steller culinary team," said the Townsend's managing director, Steven Kalczynski. "His knowledge, creativity and passion for quality, approachable and regionally-inspired cuisine is sure to impress our visitors' palates."
Sayes began his culinary career at the Culinary Studies Institute in Farmington Hills, honing his skills by working with some of the area's top chefs. In August, Sayes began a Certified Executive Chef through the American Culinary Association.
Before coming to the Townsend, Sayes served as executive chef at the Atlantic Athletic Club in Johns Creek, GA. Before that, he worked for the Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company at various locations throughout the country, including Dearborn; Marina del Ray, CA; Buckhead, GA and New Orleans.
"I've always taken pride in serving my guests only the finest quality products from my kitchen," Sayes recently said in a press release. "I'm an avid supporter of local farms and supporting sustainable practices, while focusing on regional cuisine rooted in French technique with approachable, unpretentious flavors."
Interested foodies will also be able to check out Sayes during the upcoming James Beard Celebrity Chef Tour, which stops at the Bloomfield Hills Open Hunt Club on Jan. 27. The dinner will also feature the Townsend's executive pastry chef, Taylor Brockenshire.
This isn't the first major change at the Townsend in recent months. Kalczynski was named the new managing director of the Townsend in September after former director Peter Wilde left after 13 years at the Birmingham hotel.