Chef Keith Mitchell
Keith Mitchell was born in 1966 into a large Irish family, where food and the table were always the center of family life. He developed his passion for food and farm fresh ingredients watching his grandmother, pick and prepare fresh vegetables and fruits daily. Keith incorporates his personal passion for living seasonally and sustainably into all of his Restaurants. The chef believes in handpicking and tasting all products and insists on earth-friendly farming, to protect the land. Before Keith decided on a career in culinary though, he followed in the footsteps of his father and grandfather by joining the United States Army in 1983. Keith was a member of the 82nd Airborne Division and 3rd Ranger Battalion.
In 1981, at the age of fifteen, he began his professional career at The Dutch Pastry Shop in Blackwood, NJ working as a pastry apprentice with world renowned Pastry Chef Hubert Rosslier. He then went on to attend the Philadelphia Restaurant School in 1989 (now known as the Restaurant School at Chestnut Hill College) in Philadelphia, PA. In 1990 Keith took a job with Michel Richard at his name sake restaurant in Center City Philadelphia, where he learned the art of French cuisine. From there, he moved to Chanterelle’s, and worked under James Beard nominated Chef Philippe Chin, as a chef Tournant, where he combined Asian and French cuisines. A move to Washington, DC in February of 1992, and the opportunity to work with Roberto Donna at Galileo restaurant as a line cook, lead him to discover farm to the table cuisine in a modern fine dining Italian restaurant.
Missing South Jersey, Keith moved home in December of 1992 to take his first chef position at the Forks Inn and Marina Restaurant in Sweetwater, New Jersey. The New York Times rated the Forks Inn and Marina a “rare gem” and called the food innovative and fabulous. In 1994 Keith was encouraged by his former chef, Philippe Chin, to take over the Chef de Cuisine position at the Dining Room at The Ritz-Carlton in Philadelphia, PA. While at The Ritz-Carlton Philadelphia, Keith had the privilege to work with the legendary Julia Child during a taping of her show. He was also named one of 13 rising new chefs to watch at The Ritz-Carlton Philadelphia by the National Restaurant Association in August of 1995. The Dining Room at The Ritz-Carlton Philadelphia was named one of the top two restaurants in Philadelphia and one of the top 10 restaurants in the United States in Gourmet Magazine.
Following his dream to be a chef owner, Keith opened Mitchell’s American Bistro with his wife, Marla in 1998. Mitchell’s was named best new restaurant by New Jersey Magazine in July 1999, best new shore restaurant by Philadelphia Magazine in July 1999, and New Jersey’s best BYO restaurant by Zagat from 2000 - 2003. Keith had his first of two opportunities to cook for the President of the United States at the White House in 2002.
In 2003, while participating in the LPGA Food and Wine Event in Atlantic City, NJ, Keith met current Food Network star, Robert Irvine, who was the Executive Chef at Caesars Atlantic City. After working together on several high end food events such as the Perona Farms Gala in Andover, NJ and the Atlantic City Restaurant Gala at the Atlantic City Convention Center, Keith decided to join Chef Robert Irvine’s culinary team at Caesars Atlantic City as Nero’s Chef de Cuisine. Shortly after joining the Caesars Atlantic City team in 2002, Nero’s was named the top rated steakhouse in the country by Epicurious Magazine. During his time at Caesars, Keith has continued his culinary development by working with several high profile chefs including David Burke, Wolfgang Puck, Guy Fieri, Giada De Laurentiis, Rachel Ray, and Tom Colicchio.
Keith’s performance was recognized in 2005 when he was promoted to the position of Executive Sous Chef and again in 2009 when he was promoted to his current position as Executive Chef of Caesars Atlantic City where he sets the standards, expectations, mission and vision of the culinary department. In addition, he analyzes current food trends throughout the industry to ensure that Caesars Food & Beverage Operations continue to redefine and offer the products and superior service that solidify their position as “a world-class destination.”
Throughout his culinary career, Keith has had the opportunity to participate in several high end events including, the Inaugural Philadelphia Wine Festival, the Opus One event at Liberty Place in Philadelphia, the Friends of James Beard dinner at the Beard House in New York, an evening with James Clendenen of Au Bon Climat Winery, The Chateau Petrus event at Caesars, Atlantic City Food & Wine Festival, Taste of the LPGA at Trump Taj Mahal, and The Diamonds and Pearls Event at Caesars.
When not in the kitchen, Keith enjoys spending time with his wife, Marla and his 3 children. He also likes traveling, fishing, mixed martial arts, going to the beach and training in Tang Soo Do where he is a first degree black belt.