Chef Stephen Farquhar was born in Milwaukee, WI, but grew up in the Clearwater/Largo area. He attended the Pinellas Technical Education Center in Clearwater to start his career in culinary arts. He began as a bus boy at Innisbrook Golf Resort in Tarpon Springs, where his passion for the culinary arts helped him work his way up to cook’s helper and then cook.
In 1977, Chef Stephen got the opportunity of a lifetime and headed to Germany to train under German master chefs. He began working at Restaurant Cafe Adlwarth in Garmisch-Partenkirchen, West Germany where he focused on traditional Bavarian cooking with an infusion of French, Swiss and Austrian cuisine. Later, he took a position at the Kurpark Restaurant and began as a saucier. From there he went to fill many positions, including Garde Manager, Chef du Poissous, Chef du Rotis and Sous Chef. Chef Stephen also worked weekends at the Bayernhalle (Beer Hall) traditional Basarres festivities.
In 1980, Chef Stephen returned to Florida and began working at Bon Appétit Restaurant. He has been there ever since, with only a short leave in 1983 to work a roundsman position at the La Provance and the Royal Orleans Hotel in New Orleans. For over 30 years, Chef Stephen has developed his frequently-changing menu to adapt to the cuisines, economies and trends that have come and gone throughout the years. Chef Stephen continues to study many cuisines and aims to be authentic when he creates ethnic dishes. He enjoys working with ingredients that are fresh and come from local sources and he loves experimenting with different ideas to create new dishes.