Meet the Chef
Chef Nicholas Eaton
Chef Eaton’s culinary odyssey began in his home town of Canton, Ohio, where, like many cooks, he learned to love the art of cooking at the side of his grandmother. He grew up with many friends from different cultures and enjoyed eating the authentic Indian, Italian, and Greek cuisines they served at their tables. Here too, he learned to love the authentic flavors of Mexico from his stepmother.
Always interested in learning as much as he could about food he co- founded a culinary club in high school. He began cooking professionally in local diners and bistros after graduation. He later moved to Florida where he worked in everything from pizzerias to country clubs, even catering in South Beach penthouses. Here he was exposed to many cultural cuisines of the Caribbean, Latin America, and the Philippines, gaining a deep appreciation for these cuisines and all their unique flavors.
Eaton’s studies took him to Europe, particularly Germany and Austria, which he used as a base to travel and learn about the foods of southern France, Spain, Poland, Czech Republic, and Italy. He has completed internships at Restaurant Vieux Sinzig in the Ahr Region of Germany, under chef Jean Marie Dumaine, and Yuon Hue, a disciple of Michel Bras; and upon returning to the United States, at Wedmore Place in Virginia.
After moving to Michigan Eaton has been working with Whole Foods & Papa Joe’s. Eaton worked as a Sous Chef at Birmingham’s prestigious Lebanese Restaurant, Phoenicia. Having a strong desire to further the growth of quality food culture in the area, Eaton entered the field of culinary education. He currently teaches Culinary Arts for Oakland County Schools, and Dorsey Culinary Academy in Roseville. When the opportunity to become culinary director of East Essence Chef presented itself, Chef Eaton jumped at it. “Knowledge of cooking is essential to having healthy eating habits and helps us remain in touch with our traditions and pass along our food cultures. Unfortunately, many kids reach their teen years without learning these basic skills which add another dimension of enjoyment to their lives. This is a great learning opportunity. ”
Chef Eaton is a graduate of the prestigious Culinary Program at Johnson & Wales University in Miami, Florida, holds a CSW designation from the Society of Wine Educators, is a member of the American Culinary Federation, and the Culinary Historians of Ann Arbor. In addition to cooking, he teaches kitchen sanitation via the ServSafe program of the National Restaurant Association.