“This recipe gives back to the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. I have lost many important people in my life to these cancers, and have watched many more struggle through it. This charity is very near and dear to me.” – Sarah Cloyd
EXECUTIVE CHEF SARAH CLOYD’S STORY
Sarah Cloyd grew up in Selma, CA, on 5 square miles of vineyard –– fun fact, it’s also known as the “Raisin Capital of The World”. While in high school Sarah had her son Adam and wasn’t sure what her passion was in life. In fact, she wasn’t interested in cooking till one day she woke up and decided she wanted to cook. When she told her parents the news they chuckled as she had little experience in the kitchen. To make this thought a reality Sarah went to the Institute of Technology in Clovis, CA. Her class started with twenty students and by graduation, only six people, including herself had made it through the program. This school was smaller and as a result, it had less funding. Carving a chicken or filleting a fish was done by the instructor because there was only one protein available to demonstrate to the class. Sarah learned a few things from the program but realized the best way to learn how to be a chef was in the real world.
After graduating, Sarah remained in California and worked at Ducey’s at Bass lake. She had just turned 20, was a single mom, and commuted 120 miles round trip to work. During her two years at Ducey’s Sarah learned how to deal with surprises in the kitchen. Her first weekend working at Ducey’s was a trial by fire –– it was Easter brunch, the power had gone out, there were bears in the dumpsters, half the line in the kitchen didn’t work, and coolers were down. Soon after learning the art of kitchen surprises, Sarah moved on to another restaurant and learned the importance of speed and efficiency in a kitchen while working at a sauté station complete with eighteen burners, three ovens, two wok burners, and two salamanders by herself.
At 24 Sarah was promoted from a line cook to Executive Chef. There were many firsts for her in this role. It was her first time writing a menu from scratch, first time training a crew, and first time leading a team –– she learned from her mistakes while celebrating the small victories. After this moment of “firsts”, Sarah and her son decided to move to Colorado where she worked at Euclid Hall, Rioja, Stoic & Genuine, and eventually joined the Steuben’s Arvada family. She was with the company for two months and then the world shut down when COVID hit. 2020 had its ups and downs but she was used to surprises, granted nothing this big, but nevertheless, she kept her chin up and worked hard at Steuben’s Uptown till returning to Steuben’s Arvada in December 2020 to open for takeout and delivery. Sarah has been with Secret Sauce Food & Beverage for fourteen months, and in the kitchens for sixteen years since that morning she had woken up and had the urge to cook.