The sumptuous dining at The Grand America is driven by the talent and experience of our chefs. Each brings a wide range of epicurean skill and knowledge to the hotel, imparting a signature quality to every menu and dining experience.
(L to R: Fernando Sobernais, Alexandre Henocq, Juston Williams, Phillip Yates, Thomas Call)
Executive Chef and Director of Culinary Operations Phillip Yates
Growing up in a small town west of Austin, Texas, Chef Phillip Yates first became interested in culinary arts at a very young age while learning to cook with his mother. After graduating at the top of his class in 2003 from the Western Culinary Institute in Portland, Oregon he was offered an internship with the Four Seasons Hotel in Austin, Texas.
Phillip first joined the Grand America Hotel in 2007 and was quickly promoted to Executive Chef in 2009. Since then he has lead his team of chefs to host top companies, exquisite weddings, grand affairs for 3,000, as well as intimate receptions for world-renowned dignitaries.
As Executive Chef and Director of Culinary Operations, Phillip continues to bring a new dimension of excellence to the hotel’s signature restaurant, banquet and catering facilities.
Executive Sous Chef Fernando Soberanis
A native of Acapulco, Mexico, Chef Soberanis brings more than 20 years of culinary experience to his position at The Grand America Hotel. Previously, he held the position of sous chef for both The Little America Hotel and The Grand America Hotel.
Chef Soberanis has held various culinary positions at a variety of hotels and resorts, including executive chef at The Aerie Restaurant at the Snowbird Ski Resort, Utah; executive banquet chef at Zermatt Resort & Spa, Utah; executive chef at the Hotel Park City,Utah; junior sous chef at the Red Lion Hotel in Salt Lake City; and line cook at the Hyatt Regency Resort in Acapulco, Mexico. Chef Soberanis has also worked at restaurants including Green Street in Salt Lake City, where he was executive chef, and the Dakota Restaurant in San Diego, where he was lead cook. Chef Soberanis was also the former proprietor of the Tonnio’s Pizzeria in Acapulco, Mexico. Chef Soberanis is a member of the American Culinary Federation, Beehive Chef Chapter.
Currently Chef Soberanis works in harmony with his culinary team to ensure the best in upscale dining for all guests of The Grand.
Executive Pastry Chef Alexandre Henocq
Alexandre Henocq started began his culinary career at the age of 15 in his hometown of Givet, France. After training side by side with mentor and Master Pastry Chef Gille Le Duff, he completed his apprenticeship and graduated at the top of in his class as a certified pastry chef, chocolate-maker, ice-cream maker and confectioner. Known for his striking sugar and chocolate showpieces, as well as an abundance of other delectable desserts, Alexandre combines intricate flavors while demonstrating inspiring presentations.
Alexandre’s passion for pastry and creating memorable dining experiences is a wonderful addition to our culinary team. His background and training will add an impressive component to our guest experience in restaurant operations and La Bonne Vie.
Working closely with his culinary team, Alexandre enjoys sharing knowledge and collaborating to infuse exciting new flavors which inspire his pastry creations. Constantly seeking out new ideas and ingredients to share his love for pastry is Alexandre’s passion. His philosophy is, it is impossible to have enough skills and knowledge; you can always learn something from someone to add to your culinary repertoire.
Before joining The Grand America Hotel as Executive Pastry Chef, Alexandre worked at the Luxor and Excalibur Resort and Casino in Las Vegas, where he set exceptional standards. At this property, he oversaw eight restaurants, two buffets, multiple banquet facilities, two wedding chapels and a total of 8,000 guest rooms.
Prior to heading to Vegas, Alexandre was the Pastry Chef at the Dunes Golf Club and Beach Spa in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. In this role he oversaw the pastry department, which catered to three fine dining restaurants and banquet operations. In this role, he received first place three times in the ginger bread house competition for the Dickens Christmas Show, as well as receiving awards in multiple ACF competitions.
When out of the kitchen, Chef is an avid nature lover and enjoys hiking, mountain biking, fishing, skiing and spending time with his family.
Chef de Cuisine Thomas Call
California-bred and classically trained, Chef Tom Call brings the best of both worlds to the tables at the Grand America Hotel, where he has recently been appointed Chef de Cuisine.
A native of California’s gold country, he is a graduate of the California Culinary Academy and completed his internship in Lucca, Italy. There he fine-tuned his European cuisine skills and learned first-hand how to infuse each dining experience with a spirit of “la bella vita.” Cooking alongside Italian chefs, he came to share the belief that memorable meals are made of simple dishes, the finest ingredients and perfect technique.
Chef Call worked for over a decade in San Francisco's finest Michelin-starred restaurants under the mentorship of world-class chefs. He served as saucier at Campton Place, and sous chef for Coi, Aqua, One Market and the Hotel Monaco. Most recently, Call was chef for Trio Restaurant Group in Salt Lake City.
With professional experience encompassing, Italian, French seafood and upscale American cuisines, Call brings classical training, a varied global perspective, and an innate love of food to his new role. When not creating new seasonal dishes or orchestrating large scale culinary events like the Grand America’s fabled Sunday Brunch, Call can be found in his home kitchen, whipping up simple, flavorful meals for his wife and young son.
Banquet Chef Juston Williams
After graduating from Davis Applied Technology College with a degree in Culinary Arts, Juston Williams joined the Grand America culinary team in 2006 as a Line Cook. Working under the direction of Phillip Yates, Juston quickly rose through the ranks and in February of 2013 was promoted to Banquet Chef.
Juston’s passion for cooking was apparent even as a kid, when he enjoyed making desserts for friends and family. It was precisely those friends and family who inspired Juston to become a Chef. “Seeing how a great meal brings everyone together and melts away the day’s transgressions is what being a chef is all about,” Juston says. Pursuing this love for cooking and curiosity about cuisine is what helped Juston succeed in his multiple roles in The Grand America Kitchen.
When Juston is not catering to groups of up to 2,000, you can find him trying new cuisine, learning about the scientific methodology of food, and exploring Utah’s mountain country.