Warren, N.J. – August 1, 2018 – Stone Hose at Stirling Ridge, part of the Landmark Hospitality collection, is honored to announce the appointment of Chef David Drake as the Executive Chef at this celebrated location. Landmark is owned by Frank and Jeanne Cretella, seasoned restaurateurs, who are committed to creating wonderful memories for guests and team members alike in all of Landmark’s iconic venues.
Chef Drake, having known and admired the Cretella’s for many years, is absolutely thrilled to become part of the remarkable Landmark family and is proud to be part of the Cretella’s legacy of extraordinary hospitality.
Indisputably one of New Jersey’s premier chefs, The New York Times stated: “David Drake is a chef who does not tolerate anything less than perfection.” Grounded in classic French techniques – yet always forward-thinking and adventurous – Drake’s cuisine is defined by his respect to the purity and integrity of the ingredient.
David was influenced early on by The Escoffier Cookbook learning principles he applied extravagantly to fresh, local ingredients long before the phrase “farm-to-table” was coined. He honed his signature cuisine at The Frog and The Peach, Stage House, and Restaurant David Drake, all of which garnered exceptional praise. In the kitchen, David’s skill is matched only by his resolve to succeed, fact proven when, at the age of 14, he was determined to prevail after a fireworks explosion robbed him of his hand. His rehabilitation included throwing a baseball against a wall, learning to catch using the Jim Abbott technique long before Abbott arrived on the scene. Despite these challenges, incurred at such a young age, it was in the restaurant kitchen, being both tolerant yet competitive, that David thrived most.
Chef Drake inherits Stone House’s rich farming history, a shared core-value, and wholly appropriate as the inspiration for Drake’s new Stone House menu is vegetable-driven. David’s food philosophy is “simply prepared cuisine, utilizing wonderfully fresh ingredients, and seeking perfection in an imperfect environment.”
“Dinner for two, private dining at our chef’s table, lounging at our outdoor water table, or a wedding for several hundred; I love the uniqueness of the property and am extremely proud to be part of the Landmark team.”