Calbert McDonald, S.C.E.C., was born in Kingston, Jamaica (professional personal chef) and grew up in Saint James in a small district named Anchovy, seven miles out of Montego Bay. He attended Anchovy Secondary School where he studied fine arts. At the age of sixteen, Calbert won a fine arts competition in the Montego Bay watercolor division and second place in the flower show in the watercolor/fine arts competition.
At the age of seventeen, Calbert and his twin brother Carlton, along with Phillip Higgins and Errol Allan, staged a fine arts exhibition of sixty pieces at the Montego Bay Parish Library. In 1981 he entered into an exhibition called "Image 82" with some of Jamaica's best artists, including Lionel Walker, Errol Allan, and Phillip Higgins.
Recognizing Calbert's artistic potential, Chef William McCabe, a customer at a supermarket where Calbert was employed early in his career, offered him a job at his gourmet restaurant, Golden Unicorn. Washing dishes during the day and learning to cook at night, Calbert soon became a prep cook and began practicing carving vegetables into artistic pieces in his spare time.
Chef Calbert, (professional personal chef), worked at the Doctor Cave Beach Hotel as a first cook, eventually moving to the Home Town Bakery where he was Head Chef. He developed his culinary skills at premiere restaurants where he specialized in sauces, soups, and salad dressings. (professional personal chef)
Having found his true talent, Calbert attended the Western School of Hospitality in Montego Bay where he graduated Most Outstanding Student. His dedication and hard work studying a la carte dining, pastry and cake decorating earned him a scholarship to George Brown College in Toronto Canada.
Upon graduation, he worked at the Sandals Royal Caribbean Hotel in Jamaica in the gardemanger department. Chef Calbert and his brother Carlton began to fine tune their skills of creating ice, butter, vegetable and fruit carvings, and entered the cruise line industry. After four years of perfecting his artistic carving skills, Chef Calbert studied culinary management at Humber College in Toronto, Canada, where he also co-taught with professors in food production and gardemanger classes.
With his desire to take his culinary skills to the next level, Chef Calbert studied sushi at the Sushi Technical School in Queens, then worked as Sous Chef and Chef Gardemanger at various restaurants including Water's Edge in Long Island City, Kitchen Provance in Manhattan, and The Crystal Plaza in Livingston, New Jersey. He then became Executive Chef at Arin Danielle Catering in Manhattan. Continuing his passion for the culinary arts, he moved to Connecticut where he was Executive Sous Chef at The Hartford Club in downtown Hartford before moving out on his own.
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