Williamsburg, Va. – Patriots Colony At Williamsburg is pleased to announce it has welcomed Michael A. Gregory as its new Executive Chef, who is bringing a career of culinary excellence in fine dining resorts to the region’s premier retirement community.
Located in Williamsburg, Patriots Colony At Williamsburg is a Riverside Health System continuing care retirement community – offering independent, assisted, memory care, short-term rehabilitation and long-term nursing home care – for those 55 and older. Independent living is reserved for residents who served in the Armed Forces or as civil servants.
In many ways, coming to Patriots Colony is like coming home for Gregory, who grew up in York County and graduated from Tabb High School.
Back then, Gregory was more of the athletic type, he said, and was only cooking for family.
“I used to cook with my grandmother all the time,” Gregory said, noting her black-eyed peas recipe as his long-time favorite. “She raised me and I had three siblings under me, so when she went to work someone had to do a little cooking.”
Right out of high school, though, Gregory landed a job working at Colonial Williamsburg and at the Williamsburg Inn.
At the time, Hans Schadler, CEC was leading the culinary programs there and encouraged Gregory to get involved in the apprentice program.
“I took his advice and went into the apprentice program,” Gregory said. “I had fallen in love with food and knew it was serious business.”
And he’d developed a style based on Schadler’s iconic training of the classics and blending it with new wave approaches.
“I still love cooking with the rues and the butters, but can be flexible with oils and vinaigrettes,” Gregory said.
Gregory would go on to work for Colonial Williamsburg for 15 years, then traveled throughout the East Coast, working as Chef de Cuisine and Executive Chef for five-star resorts.
“I wanted to start working my way back to Virginia, so when the job at Patriots Colony came open I was immediately intrigued,” Gregory said.
At Patriots Colony, Gregory said, his goals of the culinary program is to ensure residents receive food that doesn’t just fit their health care needs nutritionally, but also is creative, served in seasonally changing menus and could go up against any menu in the finest resorts.
“Residents here have lived around the world, they know good food,” Gregory said. “We’re going to show them good food in a variety of ways.”
Gregory operates three restaurants on the property, supports take-out orders for residents and also provides all the food service for residents in the memory care unit and for health care (nursing home) residents.
The restaurants, recently opened as part of the large dining services renovation completed at Patriots Colony, includes Archie’s Tavern, where the atmosphere and food is casual and happy hours are well attended; The Bistro, where residents have access to an upscale buffet in a fast-casual style menu; Fireside, a fine dining menu; and The Terrace, an outdoor dining area where food from The Bistro or The Tavern can be enjoyed.
When he’s not in the kitchen at Patriots Colony, you can likely find Gregory in his kitchen at home, or even more likely, out on his grill.
“I’m happy cooking wherever I am, whether it’s at home, a resort or a senior living community,” Gregory said. “Whether you cook asparagus at a vacation spot or cook a steak for someone in their home, there is a joy of cooking for me and the goals are always the same – provide an amazing experience.”
Learn more about Patriots Colony At Williamsburg by calling 757-220-9000 or visit patriotscolony.org. Patriots Colony is located in Williamsburg at 6000 Patriots Colony Drive.
Published: July 12, 2018