Ashley Elicker Ashley Elicker oversees all aspects of the resort’s culinary operations on a year-round basis. Originally from New Canaan, Conn., Elicker graduated from Middlebury College, in Ver- mont. She earned her MBA from the University of Virginia and completed the French Culinary Institute’s Classic Culinary Arts Program. “Ashley brings an excitement and knowledge of the culinary arts that will forge Okemo ahead of expectations and continue our quest to provide a culinary experience which is on par with our snow quality and resort experience,” said Okemo VP and General Manager Bruce Schmidt. Elicker embarked on her culinary career as a manager with the Union Square Hospitality Group. She then returned to the French Culinary Institute in a professional capacity, where she worked on growth initiatives for the highly respected New York City culinary school. She spent the last six years with Panera Bread, in Boston, Mass. She held several positions while at Panera including finance director, district manager and operations director. “Everyone at Okemo has been so welcoming,” said Elicker. “It’s unusual to inherit a team that is so strong. There is a solid foundation here and I’m delighted to be working with such a dedicated and professional culinary staff.” Elicker is eager to provide Okemo’s winter guests with a variety of culinary options that will include the classic menu items they expect while keeping in line with culinary trends such as customization, providing healthy options, sourcing local foods and being mindful of sustainability. She also plans to enhance service, improve operational flow and efficiency, and re-evaluate procedures with a goal toward improving the overall resort experience. A former skier who is eager to return to the slopes and try snowboarding, Elicker visited Okemo as a child and fell in love with Vermont during her college years at Middlebury. In her spare time, she enjoys relaxing at home with her boyfriend and their two adopted dogs, fishing, running and vegetable gardening. Jason Tostrup Formerly Okemo Mountain Resort’s executive sous chef, Jason Tostrup lives by a simple culinary philosophy. He believes in doing what’s right for the land, the animals, and the food that is produced from them. Tostrup is known as a leader in New England’s farm-to-table movement. He has developed strong alliances with numerous area growers and food producers, and he readily shares his philosophy with those who experience his food and his hospitality. Chef Tostrup joined the Okemo culinary team at the start of the 2013/2014 ski and snowboard season. With his extensive experience and creativity he took the popularity of Okemo’s Epic restaurant to new heights for skiers and riders in search of a unique full-service lunch experience. “A chef is just one part of an overall successful business model,” said Tostrup. “I started with something that was already great and added my own flavors and layers of texture.” Tostrup’s culinary career began in 1996 at The Restaurant Renaissance, in Aspen, Colo. He started as a pastry assistant and worked his way up the kitchen ladder to roundsman and sous chef under world-renowned chef/owner Charles Dale. In 1999, he was promoted to executive chef. In 2002, Tostrup moved to Napa Valley, Calif. There, he was sous chef for award-winning chef Thomas Keller at Keller’s bistro outpost, Bouchon. It was during his time in California that Chef Jason explored the area’s commitment to agriculture, sustainability and the relationships that ultimately defined his values and cuisine. He also apprenticed under some of New York’s finest chefs: Daniel Boulud, Jean-Georges Vongerichten, Roco Dispirito and Marcus Samuelsson. The opportunity to work more directly with farmers and food producers lured him to southern Vermont where, as a chef/owner, he established two award-winning restaurants: Verterra and Lucy’s Tavern at the Inn at Weathersfield. During the winter season, Okemo offers visitors a dozen dining options across the mountain, ranging from grab-and-go cafeterias to full-service, fine dining – and everything in between. What’s Cooking? There are some new ingredients in the recipe at Okemo Mountain Resort’s culinary department. Okemo welcomes Ashley Elicker as its new director of culinary services and congratulates Chef Jason Tostrup on his promotion to executive chef. > 802-228-1600 > page 25