Friday Evening Chef: Frank Aloise
Chef Frank John Aloise is a culinary creative with over 25 years of experience of serving from the heart. A born Boston native with an Italian heritage, Frank is known for showcasing farm-to-table elegance fusing old world and new world concepts for all to enjoy. His personal mission is to serve God and others through the vessel of food. You can watch his television segment on local NBC Affiliate WBIR every other Monday, or visit his Northern Italian inspired restaurant Cappuccinos, in which he acts as Executive Chef for the Copper Cellar Corporation.
Friday Evening Sommelier: Melanie Alexander
As a modern Renaissance woman, Melanie Alexander has created multiple socially, spiritually, and environmentally conscious companies from the ground up. She is an innovator, thought leader, entrepreneur, and CEO of AlmaDiem: A Business Community (an entrepreneurial center for local based businesses) as well as managing partner for Family Tree Candle Company and it’s sister company Sip & Pour. Her brands delight in carrying out the mission of bringing joy and inspiration to the lives of others one service and product at a time.
A native of Knoxville, Tennessee, Kathy Hopkins found her calling to hospitality and the food industry early on in life. When she was only 13 years old, she held her first waitressing job at the Walgreens Soda Shop. She later went on to continue waiting tables, managing restaurants and then eventually being a restaurant consultant in Dallas, Texas in the 80’s. Once she moved back to Tennessee, she worked in the foodservice industry in equipment and supply sales and as a foodservice design and sales manager.
In 1991 she began catering, at first for friends and family, but over the years her in-home, start-up company has evolved into a successful catering company she owns and runs with her family today: Hopkins and Co.
Kathy loves food and sharing it with others. She enjoys sharing her passion with people of all ages and loves bringing families and friends together in the kitchen and around the dinner table. She preaches that we “eat with our eyes” and once you understand that and how to make it happen you will be able to introduce a whole new world of food to people.
Hospitality and food have always been the love languages that Kathy communicates best through, stating that a meal can help make a memory that will last a life time. In 2001, Kathy, who loves a challenge, took on the role of head chef at Camp Tanasi where she replaced pre-packaged and processed food with made-from-scratch recipes. The food at Camp Tanasi is unlike any camp food you will ever taste because she pours her love of people, food, education and nutrition into each personal recipe. Her favorite week of camp is, of course, the Culinary Week, where she instructs girls in making nutritious and delicious food while having a blast!
Kathy says the best compliment she has received is when a parent tells her that they can’t believe their picky-eater daughter tried ____________; or when the said picky-eater joyfully announces that after being begged into trying a food they thought they wouldn’t enjoy, they love it and are coming back for seconds.
Kathy says, “My love for people and food has given me the opportunity to learn and share with many people from all walks of life, and for that I am thankful.”