Eva Castanon, CSC
By Cynthia Gaines
Eva Castanon moved to the U.S. with her family in 2002 from Venezuela, having just finished her first semester studying industrial engineering. Her first job in America was as a cook at Sea Island,
a resort in Sea Island, Ga. Before that, she had never even worked in a
kitchen, much less considered a career in the culinary field. “My time at
the resort exposed me to many knowledgeable, professional and motivated
chefs who, through their enthusiasm and passion for cooking, convinced
me to pursue a degree in culinary arts and hands-on training through an
apprenticeship,” she says. Today, Castanon is an award-winning certified
sous chef working as banquet sous chef at Houston Country Club (HCC),
Houston. Here, she talks with Sizzle about her journey.
tell us about your history with
Houston Country Club.
ec: After serving as an apprentice
at HCC, I left the club for a year
and returned in 2009 to begin my
current role. I oversee daily production
and mise en place for a la carte
and banquet functions, manage food
production and am responsible
for my department’s maintenance
work orders. I am also the
program coordinator for HCC’s
undergone the apprenticeship
program and was able to guide
and implement the local program.
Alex Darvishi, CEC, AAC, executive
chef at the club, mentioned the
opportunity to me, and it all
worked out. We currently have
opposite: Chicken consommé with
mixed vegetables, shaved black
truffles, roasted corn flan and fennel
fronds, with a puff pastry garnish
why did you decide to take on the
role of apprenticeship coordinator?
ec: ACF Professional Chefs
Association of Houston was in
search of a chef who had
what was your time as an
ec: I apprenticed under Fritz
Gitschner, CMC, AAC, from 2004
to 2008. It was a great experience.
Working and going to school full
time, competing in ACF-sanctioned
competitions and maintaining the
logbook was quite a load, but it
was all worth it.