Stroudsmoor Country Inn’s enduring legacy primarily rests on the shoulders of the Pirone family who founded the business in 1984, but a lot of the Inn’s longevity is also due to the work, passion, and dedication of the owners’ adopted family members like Executive Baker Jessica Hicks who manages Stroudsmoor Bakery & Café, Jason Witcraft who devotedly maintains the property, and Executive Chef Dave Snee who has orchestrated tens of thousands of meals served from our event kitchen for more than two decades. There are many others that remain committed to Stroudmoor’s enduring legacy; however, we write today about Chef David and his long career at the Inn.
Beginning with the New Year, Chef Dave will be handing the reigns to another of Stroudsmoor’s talented chefs, Chef Gerard, while he steps out of the kitchen to spend some much-deserved quality time with family.
A Table for 2 or a Feast of Plenty, Chef Dave is Always at the Ready
Chef Dave began working as the Inn’s Executive Chef on January 30th, 2002. “Home-base” for Dave was originally the Main Inn Kitchen, where he worked directly with Stroudsmoor’s matriarch and lead culinarian, Bernadette Pirone (known more affectionately around property as Mrs. P). The Main Inn Kitchen is also where both of his successors, Chef Gerard Tuohy and, more recently, Chef Brandon Otto, have planted their own roots.
Like so many members of the Stroudsmoor Family, Dave’s role at the Inn precedes even some of the property’s buildings and expansions, such as the acquisition of Stroudsmoor Bakery & Café in 2005—located on Broad Street, Stroudsburg—and the 2007 construction of the Inn’s largest wedding venue, Terraview.
Linda Pirone-Forte—Stroudsmoor’s Director of Event Operations—recalled (following our 40th Annual Thanksgiving Celebration) that Chef Dave once helped the Inn navigate a rather unique holiday meal in total darkness.
One of his first Thanksgivings at Terraview, she said, the building completely lost power. Despite the challenges the situation presented, Chef Dave, as well as Mrs. P, the rest of the Pirone family, and the staff powered through. She said even in darkness, Stroudsmoor served over 800 guests thanks to gas-powered stoves, portable generators, and natural light—not to mention Chef Dave and the rest of the team’s determination to make sure each and every guest was served a delicious, unforgettable holiday meal.
By the end of the night, just as the Inn started losing daylight, the power came back on, marking a bright end to an unusual Thanksgiving Day.
Fast-forward and this past November, prior to his leave, Dave, Gerard, and Brandon came together for Thanksgiving once again, putting together a monumental feast between Terraview and the Main Inn that fed more than 1,200 hungry guests.
How Chef Dave Led the Charge for a Team of Stroudsmoor Chefs
This year’s massive Thanksgiving feast was only achievable following the 2007 construction of Terraview. With capabilities of providing our clients the opportunity to host grand celebrations with guest lists numbering well into the 300s, the need for a team of chefs intensified.
At that point, Dave made Terraview’s large kitchen his home while he worked closely with another of the Inn’s long-employed chefs, Chef Gerard, to take his place as Executive Chef at the Main Inn. Years later, Gerard would fill that same role for Chef Brandon, with the younger culinarian fulfilling the former’s role at the Main Inn while Gerard slips into Chef Dave’s very large shoes at Terraview.
Like the Pirones, Dave has helped see the Inn through a number of dynamic events, including everything from growth and expansion to environmentally-caused structural damage, and, most recently, a worldwide pandemic. While we’ll miss seeing Dave behind the stoves of Terraview’s kitchens each and every day, we’re certain he won’t be far to continue to guide the Stroudsmoor Team on the path to culinary excellence.