I started my career in hospitality when I was 15 washing dishes and cleaning shrimp for a local seafood restaurant in Gonzales Louisiana. After serving in several casual establishments I landed in fine dining restaurant in Baton Rouge. While saving money for culinary school I was scouted by a Food and Beverage Director for a larger company to manage a new restaurant that was in a Renaissance hotel in Baton Rouge. After managing the beverage program there and getting to express my creativity through cocktails I was hooked. Since then I have opened multiple properties in five different states focusing on Beverage programs and ala carte dining. Having worked at the Ryland Inn as the Sommelier with Landmark Hospitality in the past I was very excited for the opportunity to be General Manager at the Stone House.
Indisputably seen as 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. Influenced early on by The Escoffier Cookbook, Drake applied extravagances 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 earning exceptional praise. In the kitchen, David’s skill is matched only by his resolve, fact proven when a fireworks explosion robbed him of his left hand at age 14.
As the youngest of nine children, Alex was always in the kitchen with his mom. It seemed that his fate was to be a Chef from a very early age. He went on to hone his skills at the French Culinary Institute in New York City, and from there was hired as a line Chef at Stone House at Stirling Ridge, where he was part of our opening team. Alex wanted to gain some more experience, so he left Stone House after a few years, and worked at a French bistro and then on to a trendy hotspot restaurant, both in Manhattan. A few years later Alex returned as our Sous Chef. His love of food and passion for excellence, make him a true memorymaker.
A graduate of the New York Restaurant School, Chef Paller brings over 15 years of experience to the table. In addition to his current role as banquet chef at Stone House at Stirling Ridge, he also helps to run Landmark’s catering service Crave.
After starting in the hospitality industry at the age of 15, she could not imagine doing anything else. Erin has worked in many fine dining restaurants in Westchester County, NY, New York City, and throughout New Jersey. She has spent the past 4 years working for Fenwick Hospitality Group located in Princeton, NJ managing Agricola and overseeing the opening of Cargot as their Wine Director. Erin is excited be a part of the Landmark family at Stonehouse believing that making people happy is the most humbling and satisfying part of her job.
Carissa has been working for Landmark for nearly 9 years. She started as a hostess, using this job as a way to help her pay for college. However, Carissa had found her home and career here and over time she has worked her way up to becoming an event stylist at Stone House. Her favorite part of the job is that she gets to be a part of one of the most important days of someone’s life, their wedding day. She loves that every day is different, every event is different and that she learns something new every single day.
As the point of contact for clients from start to finish, Bonnie delivers the highest level of service in helping to flawlessly execute their visions. Both energetic and passionate, she never misses an opportunity to go above and beyond to make guests happy.
As an adviser from beginning to end, Deirdre is passionate and committed to delivering a memorable experience for our clients. Her favorite part of the job is being able to make her clients visions and dreams of their special day become a reality.
Frank Encarnacion, during his extensive career in the Chemical Industry, at companies including Lubrizol, realized his greatest joy is working with and helping people. It was his love of people that drove him to pursue a career in the restaurant business. Frank attended the Culinary School of McMenaming Grill; at the same time was the manager of Mangos Bar Café in New York.
Although Frank first came to Stone House in 2007 through a temporary placement agency, it did not take long for his talents to be recognized. In 2008, Frank became Matre’d of the Stone House Banquet Room and has been delighting clients ever since.