Salamander Resort & Spa
Mee Executive Chef Welch and Executive Pastry Chef Reaves
Executive Chef Bill Welch:
Impassioned about food, community and service, Chef Bill Welch started his culinary career at a young age.
He enrolled in the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, NY, where he graduated with a Bachelor's degree in Hospitality Management and an Associate's degree in Culinary Arts.
Bill began his professional career at the Wequassett Resort and Golf Club in Chatham, MA, under Executive Chef Bill Brodsky. He spent six years at the resort, eventually becoming Chef de Cuisine of The Outer Bar and Grille, and Sous Chef at Twenty-Eight Atlantic, the resort's signature restaurant.
In 2009, he joined the Forbes Five-Star rated Sea Island Resort in Georgia, where he would shine in a variety of positions over the next decade. In addition to serving in culinary leadership positions at Tavola and the Georgian Room restaurants, he also became the resort's Executive Chef of Events, leading to positions as Executive Chef of both The Cloister and Beach Club and The Lodge at Sea Island Golf Club.
He joined Salamander Resort & Spa as Executive Chef in 2020. He oversees culinary operations at numerous outlets, including Harrimans Virginia Piedmont Grill, Gold Cup Wine Bar and Market Salamander, as well as the resort's renowned banquet operations and interactive Cooking Studio.
Always looking to grow personally and professionally, he is currently studying for a Masters in Food Business at the Culinary Institute of America.
Executive Pastry Chef Jason Reaves:
Born and raised on a farm in Purcellville, VA, Chef Jason Reaves developed a love for food at a young age. Learning how to cook and bake from his mother and grandmother, Jason's began to check out every cookbook he could find at the local library to further hone his skills.
After entering baking competitions throughout his childhood, Jason enrolled at Monroe Technical Center in Leesburg, VA for Culinary Arts during his junior and senior year of high school. During that time, he worked in the pastry kitchen at Lansdowne Resort in Leesburg, VA, where he trained under Pastry Chef Ricardo Murillo, who inspired him to attend culinary school.
Upon graduating from the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, NY in 2004 with an Associate of Occupational Studies degree in Baking and Pastry Arts, he began his professional career with Norwegian Cruise Lines in Hawaii as an entry level pastry cook. After many promotions, he became the Assistant Chief Pastry Chef of the cruise ship, "Pride of America," where he met his wife Nicole.
After spending time working in Hawaii, California and New York and receiving numerous newspaper clippings from his mother about the future Salamander Resort & Spa, Chef Reaves returned home and became the pastry chef for Market Salamander in 2005. Jason was quickly noticed for his elaborate cake designs, and competed on many Food Network shows, including Sugar Dome, Halloween Wars and won first place on LEGO Cakes, King of Cones and Freakshow Cakes. When Salamander Resort & Spa opened in 2013, Jason became the Executive Pastry Chef, where he and his team provide all of the desserts and cakes for the resort and Market Salamander.
Family being a big part of his life, Jason feels fortunate to be raising his family and building his career where he grew up. He and his wife Nicole currently reside in Hamilton, VA with their two sons, Nolan and Calvin.