Chef Rod Butters
It was an injured arm that got Rod Butters wielding a knife. Instead of heading off on a baseball scholarship in America, Rod’s professional sports ambitions were cut short. He was forced to reflect on what appealed to him most in his life, to what he was drawn to from a very young age. And that was cooking. Even at seven years old his favorite thing to do was to get up before anyone else and make a pancake breakfast for his family.
Some career highlights include the Four Seasons Hotel group – Toronto & Vancouver, Chateau Whistler Resort opening team and Pacific Palisades Hotel Vancouver. Rod then went on to open the world famous Wickaninnish Inn, Tofino as Chef de Cuisine in 1996.
Audrey Surrao is a well known and respected restaurateur owning and operating restaurants in Kelowna BC since 2001. She is the owner of four well known restaurants: RauDZ Regional Table,
micro bar & bites and Sunny’s Modern Diner in Kelowna and Terrafina at Hester Creek Estate Winery in Oliver.
Audrey has participated as a Wine Judge in a number of wine competitions, notably the Okanagan Wine Festivals Society Spring ‘Best of Varietal’ Awards, Okanagan Life Magazine Wine Awards and the Great Northwest Wine Invitational competition in Oregon.
New to the RauDZ Creative Concepts Ltd team, Casavant comes with years of experience in the restaurant business.
Casavant has been at the forefront of improving the standards of the hospitality industry throughout his career. He was one of the first chefs in Canada to earn the Chef de Cuisine Certification (CCC) and became the first West Coast-born and trained chef to represent Canada in the prestigious Bocuse d’Or Competition, France. Alongside Rod Butters, they are members of the BC Restaurant Hall of Fame and CCFCC Honour Society. Starting in 1989, Casavant helped make Whistler a culinary destination, first as the executive chef for the newly built Chateau Whistler and later his own restaurant Chef Bernard’s Bistro. In 2006, he relocated to the Okanagan and becoming Executive Chef at the Sonora Room at Burrowing Owl Winery, later moving to Wild Apple Restaurant and Lounge in Kelowna. He joined Okanagan College in 2014 as Culinary Manager of the Wine, Food and Tourism program.
Growing up in the Okanagan, Nav was surrounded by an abundance of fresh produce and hard-working passionate farmers inspiring her to enrol in Dubrulle Culinary Institute in Vancouver. Following graduation and after a number of years honing her skills and working in Vancouver restaurants, Nav left the country and found a home at Gordon Ramsay’s restaurant Maze in Melbourne, Australia. Missing Canada, she returned to Toronto and worked at the award-winning French-influenced Auberge Du Pommier before returning to the Okanagan as Senior Sous Chef at The Terrace Restaurant at Mission Hill Family Estate. Nav’s farm to table philosophy and close relationships with local producers became her signature and she moved to Old Vines restaurant at Quails’ Gate Estate Winery as Chef de Cuisine.
Always looking for the next culinary challenge and to expand her skill set, Nav moved to Vancouver to work at internationally recognized Hawksworth in fall 2016 as Head Chef, and later moved into the role of Catering Chef, expanding the catering department of Hawksworth and executing high end events throughout BC and Toronto.
In Spring 2019 the call of the valley was impossible to resist and Nav returned to her roots accepting the position of Chef de Cuisine of RauDZ Creative Concepts Ltd.
Jason began his pastry career at Fresco, the fine dining restaurant owned by Chef Rod Butters and Audrey Surrao that opened in 2003 in downtown Kelowna. He joined Fresco following his graduation from Thompson Rivers University Culinary Arts program. After a few years, Jason moved to Vancouver continuing to develop his pastry skills at Shangri-La Hotels and Resorts before moving to Lebanon to work at Restaurant Burgundy. Jason returned to Vancouver in 2011 working as Pastry Cook at Hawksworth before heading east to Shangri-La Hotels & Resorts in Toronto for five years. Jason returned to the Okanagan in 2017 working at Waterfront Café & Catering before returning to the same space where he began his career, Fresco, now RauDZ Regional Table as Pastry Chef for RauDZ Creative Concepts Ltd (RCC) in Spring 2019. Jason joined the team in Spring 2019, to manage and oversee the pastry program for all four of the RCC restaurants and is excited to bring his creativity to all of the dessert menus.
James has a long history of working with Chef Butters. Following his apprenticeship in White Rock he was sous chef for Fresco becoming Chef de Cuisine when Fresco morphed into the more fine casual dining RauDZ Regional Table. He recently returned to RauDZ from Newfoundland after a number of years honing his skills at other restaurants, competing in numerous competitions and learning about east coast food. He has literally eaten and cooked his way across the country. He has also been part of 7 culinary teams that have competed in Gold Medal Plates.
Chef Hanna will be leading the culinary team at Terrafina at Hester Creek by RauDZ for the 2019 season. Chef has always had a passion and skill for Italian cuisine fine tuned after working in Vancouver’s top Italian restaurant Villa Del Lupo.
Kayleigh Macmillan joined the Terrafina team for our 2018 season as Restaurant Supervisor working with Operations Manager Wes Hunter. Kayleigh excelled in this position and has food and beverage in her blood with many previous leadership positions in the industry. Her enthusiastic demeanor paired with professionalism is always appreciated by the front of the house team and guests. Kayleigh will be joining us for the 2019 season as Restaurant Manager.