If you've eaten in any of the nine restaurants at Omni Amelia Island Plantation, it's clear that we have an amazing culinary team. But did you know that team is surprisingly comprised by mostly men? But one female chef is leading the pack in the kitchen at the new lobby lounge, Seaglass. After receiving a bachelors degree in culinary arts and service management, Chef Melissa McKnight rose the ranks from an internship at Amelia Island Plantation through serving as a line cook, sous chef and chef of the Verandah until her newest appointment at Seaglass. She's now overseeing the menu served in the ocean view lounge including the charcuterie board, cheese board, white bean hummus, a slider trio (crab cake with coconut aioli, green mango; white oak beef burger with herb aioli, pickled tomato; and bbq pork with spicy bbq, coleslaw), tomato relish, bacon picks, deviled eggs, buffalo chicken lollipops and pretzel bites!
Chef Melissa has many talents in the kitchen but her old-world skills of preparing the charcuterie, a brand of cooking devoted to prepared meats, are incredible! Melissa oversees the in-house charcuterie cooler where we buy whole cuts of meat to clean, cure and dry. After a few weeks or months, depending on the item she's curing, the homemade cuts are ready to be served in Seaglass or through our banquets or food and beverage outlets. She creates house aged bresaola (aged, salted air-dried beef) served with firecracker tomatoes; prosciutto (dry cured ham) served with butter pickles; and coppa (lightly seasoned, dried cured pork shoulder) served with stone ground grain mustard.
Get to know a little about Chef Melissa in this blog, resist the urge to sing Sweet Melissa, and then come see us at Seaglass.* If you can't decide what to order, I suggest that charcuterie board or slider trio but keep reading to get the chef's suggestions!