Chef Micah Martello's deep appreciation for Southern cuisine was developed at a young age growing up in Baton Rouge, Louisiana where he was exposed to a variety of foods that would fuel his lifelong passion for cooking. He began his culinary career at the age of 18 working as a prep cook at the Lafayette Hilton and Towers in Lafayette, Louisiana learning classical French cuisine and completing his apprenticeship through the American Culinary Federation. At the same time, he was attending college full time at the University of Louisiana Lafayette working towards his BA in Hotel and Restaurant Administration. After only four months at the Hilton, he was quickly promoted to line cook, then banquet chef and eventually executive sous chef. After three years learning the trade at the Hilton, he was offered his first executive chef position at Tavern on the Park in New Orleans at the young age of 21. He was the youngest executive chef in the city.
Micah’s early career as an executive chef afforded him the opportunity to run the kitchens of several top New Orleans restaurants. Café Giovanni, Charley G’s Seafood Grill to name a few and Nautical, which was named Bon Appetit Magazine’s Best New Restaurant of the year in 1999. Throughout his career he has won dozens of medals in ACF sanctioned cooking competitions as well as other many other accolades. From 1999 to 2003 he was ranked number 7 in the top 100 chefs in the US on Chef2Chef.net.
In 2000 he was lured away to Texas by Renaissance Hotels to renovate the historic Casa de Palmas Hotel and open a Latin-Fusion concept. From there he went on to work as a corporate concept chef for Carlson Restaurants Worldwide designing new menus and helping to shape the future of their new restaurants. In 2004 he moved to North Carolina where he was director of operations for A Southern Season, a 50,000 square foot gourmet retail specialty store with a 450 seat fine dining restaurant, full service prepared foods deli, a bakery, a coffee shop and a bar.
In 2012 Micah saw that his success in the corporate world had taken him far away from his love affair with the kitchen. He loved being a chef but had developed a disdain for the restaurant business so he quit his job, sold his house and bought an old bread truck which he converted to a full mobile kitchen. This was the birth of King Creole.
After two and a half years King Creole became one of the top trucks in North Carolina. In 2013 he became president of the Central Carolina Food Truck Alliance and began working with municipalities all over the state helping to shape pro food truck legislation. In 2014 he won the North Carolina State Food Truck Championship. He had finally found what he was looking for, but only one thing was missing. It was time to bring his journey full circle and come back home to Louisiana.
In November 2014 he ran his last shift with King Creole in North Carolina. Packed up the commissary and drove it home to New Orleans where you can find him currently operating. Shortly after returning home, he opened a permanent location in the St Roch Market and began offering full service catering. In the future, he'll be adding more locations and planning future food truck concepts. As the business has grown and evolved, he felt that the name should evolve with it. King Creole has since been changed to Fete au Fete. For locations and more information visit www.feteaufete.com.
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