The Locke family and Highland Avenue have promoted Sam Stachon to executive chef. Stachon will oversee the operations of the restaurant as well as banquet events at The Crossing at Hollar Mill.

Sam brings a wide range of culinary experience to the team. Having worked for many years in Charlotte, North Carolina at Noble’s and as executive chef for The King’s Kitchen and The King’s Bakery, he understands what it takes to create a hospitable and excellent dining experience for guests.  

“Putting my skills to use in this community has been very rewarding since I joined the Highland Avenue team in December 2014,” Stachon says. “I am excited to work with such a great network of local and regional farmers and purveyors. Whether someone comes in to celebrate a special occasion or simply enjoy a drink at the bar, my goal is to make their experience truly memorable.”

Stachon holds a degree in culinary arts from Johnson & Wales University. He embraces the philosophy of serving simply prepared flavorful dishes through the use of the highest quality seasonal ingredients, creative composition, and sound cooking technique. His first efforts have included evolving the menu into the summer season. The menu’s continued progression will reflect his inspiration and perspective, along with valuable input from Meg Locke.

“Working with Sam Stachon as our new executive chef has brought our entire team into focus,” Locke says. “We are intentionally guest-centered and the dining experience is warm, comfortable, and memorable. Sam’s dishes take me back in time – laughing around the family dinner table, knowing the warmth of the meal was exceeded only by the memories being created with loved ones. Fresh buttered bread, crisp local greens, [and] ripe red tomatoes in the hands of Sam Stachon create a longing for days gone by. The good news is I can relive these moments in his kitchen at his table at Highland Avenue.”

Highland Avenue opened in 2013 and is part of the Carolina Moon Hospitality family of restaurants. Located in Hollar Mill at 883 Highland Avenue SE in Hickory, North Carolina, the restaurant serves dinner Monday through Saturday and is also available for luncheons and special events. 

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