'BRINGING THE TABLES TO THE BREAD'
Native New Yorker, Chef Paul Gerard has travelled the world, fuelled by a love for good food and adventure. At 20, he left Brooklyn for New Orleans honed his skills at some of The Big Easy’s hottest Restaurants including Restaurant August, Bayona, Peristyle, and Gautreau’s. His time at Susan Spicer’s Bayona is still referred to as the restaurant’s ‘golden era’ as he and his mates he came up with in that kitchen all went on to achieve great things in the culinary world. Gerard’s came back to NY, and moved into corporate culinary community joining Todd English’s management team before taking on Executive Chef positions at China Grill Management, Soho Grand Hotel and Soho House. Returning to his New York roots, he opened restaurants including Exchange Alley, capturing the essence of the scene of his youth, E’s Bar, and Belle Reve – a small place that is pure Big Apple. He’s a musician, poet, and the creator of numerous radio, television and online programs, including his own radio show Eating Disorder on Heritage Radio Network.
Rocco Ancarola has over 25 years of experience in the entertainment industry. He is well known as an innovative leader in building, launching and operating world-class restaurants, clubs and international events. Rocco has organized major events in New York City, St Tropez, Cannes Film Festival, Paris, Miami, Cuba, Croatia, Brazil and Italy. He has been associated with well established celebrities in the worlds of fashion, film, sports, music and modelling. He has created successful brands in the restaurant industry including Ciaobella, Boom, Mezzaluna, Rocco’s and recently cofounded the leading club in New York, Pink Elephant.
Hoboken native Joe Castelo is the founder of Coalition Films. He co-wrote and directed The War Within, which premiered at the 2005 Toronto Film Festival and was nominated for two Independent Spirit Awards (Best Screenplay and Best Supporting Actor) and an International Press Academy Satellite Award for Best Picture. Castelo has an MFA in Film from Columbia University. While in film school, he wrote and directed American Saint, starring Kevin Corrigan and Vincent Schiavelli. American Saint screened at the San Francisco and Florida International Film Festivals, before winning awards for Best Film, Best Director and Best Cinematography at the 2001 Hamptons International Film Festival.