David and Sonia Wells met while attending the Culinary Institute of America. Upon graduating, they married and settled in New York City where they worked at some of the city’s top restaurants. Among those restaurants were Le Bernardin and Gramercy Tavern. After years of honing their culinary skills and learning from top NYC chefs such as Eric Ripert and Tom Colicchio, Dave and Sonia moved to Connecticut and started a small catering company named Saugatuck Kitchens. For their catering jobs, Dave & Sonia would create frozen hors d’oeuvres that could be baked from frozen at their event sites. Eventually, they began to present and sell their hors d’oeuvres to other caterers, hotels and restaurants. The hors d’oeuvres became a hit with customers! Since 1998 the line has grown from the original 12 items to over 70.
One of our biggest assets at Saugatuck Kitchens is our staff! We have a dedicated, hardworking, creative and talented group of individuals who we are proud to call our employees. Among our bright stars are Executive Chef, Matthew DeRose; Production Manager, Paul Failla; Sales Manager, Michele Cennamo; Quality Assurance Manager, Carol Magrath; Kitchen Manager, Elsa Antunez-Ortiz; and Warehouse Manager, Orlais Pupo de la Cruz. Matthew has been at SK since 2007. He is a graduate of the Culinary Institute of America and counts 18 years of experience in restaurants. Matthew has been instrumental in creating some of our most popular and tasty hors d’oeuvres. In 2012, Michele Cennamo brought her 25+ years of experience in food sales to the team as Sales Manager. Michele is always working hard to make sure our customers are happy and their needs are met. You can catch Michele at any of our food show with her beautiful displays. Production Manager, Paul Failla, joined the team in 2014. A former restaurant chef, not only has Paul brought his creative culinary skills, but has also been instrumental in creating efficient production & tracking systems. Carol Magrath joined SK in 2015 as Quality Assurance Manager. Carol is the manager who keeps us in line. Everyday Carol does an excellent job keeping the quality and safety of products priority. Rounding out the management team are Elsie and Orlais. Elsie started at SK in 1999 as a production team member. Through the years her hard work and dedication have been integral to our growth at Saugatuck Kitchens. She manages the kitchens like a pro putting quality and consistency a top priority. As warehouse manager, Orlais makes sure that all products are stored, tracked, labeled and ship correctly. A big job that Orlais masters with ease. Finally to the essence of our company…. The Production Team! The best team ever, they make sure that each handmade item is consistent and beautifully created. This dedicated team makes it possible for us to produce a quality and delicious product for our customers.
Freshness and quality of ingredients has always been top priority at Saugatuck Kitchens! To this day, all of the hors d’oeuvres are created in small batches from the freshest and finest ingredients to ensure a “just made” flavor. Each hors d’oeuvre is meticulously hand filled and shaped. Just before the hors d’oeuvres are frozen they are egg washed and garnished, giving each hors d’oeuvre its own individual look and flavor. Saugatuck Kitchens continues to grow creating new hors d’oeuvres that keep in time with changing culinary trends. Sanitation and good manufacturing practices are of the utmost importance to us. We follow HACCP guidelines and are a USDA and FDA inspected facility. In 2016 we are happy to announce that we received SQF Level 2 Certification which is recognized globally through the GFSI (Global Food Safety Initiative).