With over 18 years of industry experience, Sylva Senat has made a name for himself by garnering rich culinary experience and establishing an impressive chef’s portfolio, working at high profile restaurants across the world including Stephen Starr’s Buddakan (NYC/PHL), Chef Andrew D’Amico’s The Sign of the Dove (NYC), Aquavit (NYC), Jean-Georges at the Trump Hotel Central Park (NYC), Narula Restaurant Group’s Tashan and Koco Restaurant in El San Juan Resort & Casino (San Juan, PR). Most recently, Chef Senat’s impressive culinary background has placed him in the national spotlight as a contestant on Season 14 of Bravo’s hit show Top Chef.
“Cooking is something I am beyond passionate about. It’s not only my career; it’s my craft and what I love to do. I love creating memories that are associated with the dishes I curate. I am proud to be able to share my knowledge and experience with those in the industry who are just as motivated and passionate about the culinary arts as I am,” said Chef Senat.
A combination of Chef Senat’s dedication to the culinary arts, exposure to cultural influences from around the globe and close mentorship under world class chefs have given him the ability to conceptualize and execute exceptional dishes that cater to a diversity of palates. A French-speaking Haitian native with Manhattan fine-dining sensibilities, Chef Senat is a kitchen-trained chef who is both ambitious and humble. Chef Senat’s cooking style is rooted in a French foundation mixed with bold Caribbean flavors and spices along with added hints of Asian simplicity when it comes to ingredients and presentation.
Chef Senat is also currently spearheading a Philadelphia-based restaurant group set to unveil Maison 208 while mentoring young students from C-CAP which will include the 2016 winner of the Culinary Institute of America (CIA) scholarship in Philadelphia. From student to teacher-mentor, Chef Senat is becoming a key player in the East Coast restaurant scene and creating his own mark on the global culinary stage. Chef Senat is proud to lend his talents and diverse influences to the future success of Maison 208.
Chef Senat was recognized as a semi-finalist for the 2013 James Beard Awards in the “Best New Chef” in the Mid-Atlantic Region category, participated in the 2013 Penn Appetit’s “Taste of the Nation” culinary competition and is a proud Alumni Board Member of the Careers through Culinary Arts Program (C-CAP).
Chef Senat is a proud husband and father to his wife Sandra and daughter Yuki Senat. Chef Senat and his family currently reside in Old City Philadelphia.
With a lifetime of experience, being born into a family run bar, and over 18 years within restaurant management, Stephen Yaeger is bringing this expertise to Maison 208 as the restaurant’s Director of Operations & cultivator of the beverage program. Stephen started learning the business at a young age, watching his father own and operate their family bar, helping where could. He went on to earn his degree in Hotel, Restaurant, and Institutional Management from Penn State University and start his career managing restaurants. He spent 10 years as a member of the Starr Restaurants, successfully launching several restaurants with Stephen Starr in a General Manager role.
“I fell in love with every aspect of this industry" said Mr. Yaeger. “I am humbled to have had the opportunities to work with legends such as Stephen Starr, Rich Landau, Kate Jacoby, Johnny Fischer and Sylva Senat, to name a few". "Working with the best in the business, I feel it is my responsibility to be a mentor to others in the industry".
Stephen is well known for his time within Starr & playing an influential role in the successful openings of a number of award-winning Philadelphia restaurants. Yaeger extended his influence to his own partnerships. He is a leading partner in well-established restaurants in Philadelphia and abroad, and has a working relationship as a consultant for seven of the top 20 best restaurants in Philadelphia. His name and reputation have landed him television and magazine features as an influential cocktail innovator and wine list cultivator.