As Martha’s Vineyard private chef Food Minded Fellow, private chef Gavin Smith creates a restaurant experience in the comfort of your own home. Whether you’re looking to hire a chef to make and grill burgers for your summer family event or you need a 10-course tasting of local Martha’s Vineyard ingredients, Chef Gavin Smith can do that and more.
Private chefs tend to be lumped into stereotypes created by Hollywood: They’re too expensive, they only cater to celebrities, they’re ego-driven and only want to cook what they like. But private chefs on Martha’s Vineyard are rising to be some of the best chefs on Island, and Gavin Smith has joined the pack. After incorporating his business in 2015, Chef Smith spends the off-season not only honing his craft, but meeting the community.
A washashore hailing from Upstate New York, Chef Smith moved to Martha’s Vineyard after living in Atlanta. He has worked in almost all positions a restaurant has to offer. So when you hire his private-chef services, you’re not only hiring a chef, but a menu developer, personal shopper, farmer, cook, dishwasher, and server all in one. Plans to grow his team are in the works, but for now, it’s a one-man show that thrives on multitasking.
There’s a lot that goes into meal making — booking reservations, arranging travel, catering to special diets, knowing the food is being sourced from a reputable place — and Chef Smith takes care of it all. On the first call after taking a job, Chef Smith interviews clients to learn the ins and outs of their dining habits, and hone in on the perfect plates. Once ideas are rolling, Chef Smith personally visits farms, cheese shops, and Island markets to source the best ingredients your event can afford. Whether it’s bringing in his own hot peppers from his garden to make an incredible hot sauce, picking up local lamb from Allen Farm, or tasting a new cheese from Grey Barn to include in your cheese platter, Chef Smith sources every ingredient with the utmost care. He respects the land and those who work it. For the past two years, he and his wife Angela have been cultivating a small garden where they grow tomatoes, okra, collard greens, and peppers — perhaps an homage to their time spent in the South?
Chef Smith loves to experiment, and when a client inquires about special diets or a specific ethnic cuisine not found on Martha’s Vineyard, he happily takes on the challenge. “It pushes my own boundaries as a chef, to create meals that are not typically in my repertoire,” he says. Spend a couple of minutes talking food with Chef Smith, and it’s evident he has a great passion, which translates into stellar food.