MEET OUR CHEF: Gayle Scarberry

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Meet our fabulous head chef, of Red Maple at The Chequit on Shelter Island, Gayle Scarberry! Gayle is incredibly talented and a wonderful human being AND her cooking will make you weep. We sat down with Gayle so you guys could get to know her a little better. Make sure you visit her at Red Maple this summer and try everything on the menu.


1. How + when did you get your start?

I decided to go to culinary school a few years after my Nana passed away. She was awesome in the kitchen. I inherited her love of old recipes, farmers' markets, gardening and preserving. After school, I moved to the Cape to be closer to my father in Eastham and started working at the Lighthouse in Wellfleet.

2. Where do you draw inspiration from?

Inspiration is everywhere and completely random. It can be just the colors of the vegetables I'm prepping or the way the herbs smell when we're unpacking the order from Sylvester Manor. It also doesn't hurt that 95% of my friends cook professionally and when we hang out in our off time, we talk about food. Like-minded individuals and all that.

3. Why did you choose The Chequit and Shleter Island, NY?

I met David and Kevin through my husband, Mel. When David and Kevin were starting the Chequit project, they offered Mel the breakfast position and myself, the pastry position. And Shelter Island is so much like Cape Cod, it was an easy transition.

4. What do you like to cook at home?

It always depends on the weather outside. Now it's time for grilled meat and entrée salads. I'm currently trying to find the perfect ration/combinations of toppings. It has to have something crunchy, salty, creamy and tart tossed in with the greens. And I love using fresh fruit to make my dressings. Grilled white peaches, wine berries, beach plums, mulberries... all of them make beautiful dressings.

5. What do you like to do in your free time?

I like to do "projects". Current projects-a shrine, jewelry, a felted/reclaimed fabric rug. They are waiting for me to pick them back up after season.

6. Describe your perfect vacation.

My perfect vacation would be a cabin in the middle of the woods, with lots of books and a decent kitchen. For at least a month.

7. What is your ideal style?

I like very simple, comfortable clothes in black or gray. Chef clothes are necessary so when I'm off, I love simple linen shifts. Cool and comfortable and easy to dress up. And I'm still a Cape Cod girl, so flip-flops until it's 50 degrees out.

Kevin O'Shea