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Restaurant Team

NATHAN HARDIN, CHEF DE CUISINE

Chef Nathan Hardin oversees all culinary operations of this new casual dining restaurant. Since opening in Fall 2014, Highball & Harvest has received high praise for its Low Country-style cuisine featuring ingredients from local purveyors and the resort’s 18,000-sqaure-foot Whisper Creek Farm.A Tampa-native, Chef Hardin will bring his experience and expertise in Southern inspired cooking to Highball & Harvest. Most recently, he was Executive Sous Chef at the award-winning restaurant Yardbird Southern Table & Bar in Miami Beach, where he worked with two-Michelin-starred Chef Danny Grant, and prior to that at Copperfish Grill and Oyster Bar in Tampa. At both restaurants he successfully led teams of more than 30 staff in the production of high-quality, exceptional local and seasonal specialty dishes. His earlier experience includes four years as Sous Chef and Head Line Cook at J Alexanders in Tampa.Chef Hardin received his Associate of Arts in Culinary Arts from the Art Institute of Tampa where he completed courses in pastry art, confectionary, kitchen management and restaurant and facility operations.

STEPHANE CHÉRAMY, EXECUTIVE PASTRY CHEF

From the beginning of his career as an apprentice in the kitchens of the South of France to his flourishing career in the United States, Stephane Chéramy has led what some might call a very sweet life. Creating confections like ice cream, pastry, cakes and chocolate desserts is his forte.

As Executive Pastry Chef for Grande Lakes Orlando, Chéramy oversees both The Ritz-Carlton Orlando and the JW Marriott Orlando’s 24-hour pastry operation and a team of 39, and is responsible for the execution of all dessert and pastry production for the resort. Chéramy’s creativity and expertise in the art of patisserie are well represented throughout Grande Lakes Orlando’s food and beverage outlets including Highball & Harvest. His luscious creations are also featured in the hotel’s banquet and special events menus.

He was bestowed the medal and diploma by the Académie Culinaire de France in June 2012. Before joining the Grande Lakes Orlando culinary team in May 2006 as Executive Pastry Chef, Chéramy was the Executive Pastry Chef at The Ritz-Carlton, Sarasota. Prior to that, Chef Chéramy worked at the AAA Five Diamond, Forbes Five-Star-rated Ritz-Carlton, Naples.

 

MATT CRISTI, RESTAURANT MANAGER

In overseeing the launch of Highball & Harvest, Matt Cristi has built an all-star team of individuals who are passionate about local food, a craft beverage program and comfortable service. As a Florida native, Matt Cristi is a graduate of the Rosen College of Hospitality Management at the University of Central Florida. In the last decade, he has established an elite food & beverage career at some of the finest restaurants and hotels in Orlando. Cristi brought his leadership talents to The Ritz-Carlton Orlando, Grande Lakes in 2012 and played in integral role in developing Highball & Harvest where he currently manages the front of the house operations.