Chef Shawn Aoki prepares meals for guests in the Carolina Dining Room.
Chef Shawn Aoki has a deep appreciation for fresh ingredients thanks to his California upbringing.
“I grew up in sort of a farm setting,” he said. “We butchered our own cattle and we always had a garden.”
Aoki’s job growing up? Tending to the chickens.
His formative years helped prepare Aoki for life in the kitchen.
“My understanding of the farm-to-table concept really sprouted from there,” he said. “When you take care of something and see it on the table at the end of the day, it really gives you a sense of appreciation”
“It gave me an understanding of good ingredients and what they should really taste like.”
Since moving from the West Coast to Pinehurst, Aoki has gotten the chance to continue his agricultural exploration thanks to Executive Chef Thierry Debailleul’s focus on providing resort guests with meals prepared with local ingredients.
I think there’s a correct cooking process for the right ingredient and I don’t like to alter my flavors too much.
Pinehurst Director of GCM Bob Farren (second from left), is flanked on Pinehurst No. 2 by No. 2 Superintendent John Jeffreys (far left), former No. 2 Assistant Superintendent Alan Owen (second from right; now the superintendent of No. 6 and No. 8) and Golf Course Maintenance Manager Kevin Robinson (far right). (Photo by John Gessner)
Every year at Pinehurst, we have a “State of the Resort” meeting, bringing together more than 1,000 Pinehurst employee partners to share the highlights of the previous year. Included in the presentations are the annual awards Pinehurst gives to those who went above and beyond over the course of the previous year.
Among the big winners at Tuesday’s meeting should come as no surprise, but it’s worth highlighting their efforts (at least) one more time. And while everyone on the Pinehurst team did something in 2014 to make it a banner year, a few people had a little more pressure on their shoulders than others.
After all, Pinehurst accomplished something in 2014 that’s never been done before in the history in golf.
In April, Ben Crenshaw will play in his final Masters. The two-time champion reflects on a storied relationship
By LEE PACE
Ben Crenshaw was low amateur in the 1972 and ’73 Masters Tournaments, finishing 19th and 24th, respectively. He played in the annual rite of spring at Augusta National the next 43 years, winning in 1984 and 1995 and notching nine more top 10 finishes. He’s made the cut only two of the last 17 years, though, as the golf course has been consistently stretched out to match the power of today’s athletic swings and the heat generated by modern club technology.
Augusta played 6,905 yards when Crenshaw won in 1984. It played 7,435 yards in 2014, and Crenshaw’s rounds of 83-85 prompted him to say, “Enough.”
Donald Ross, the famed architect who designed Pinehurst No. 2, often shunned the limelight, but his wisdom still made it into the history books.
Here are 5 of our favorite Ross quotes:
“I believe wholeheartedly in golf. I consider it a game of honor. It does more to bring out the finer points in a man’s character than any other sport.”
“If you want to know a man, take him out on the golf course.”
“Pinehurst absolutely was the pioneer in American golf. While golf had been played in a few places before Pinehurst was established, it was right here in these sandhills that the first great national movement in golf was started. Men came here, took a few golf lessons, bought a few clubs and went away determined to organize clubs.”
“A country which gets golf-minded need not worry about the honor, the integrity and the honesty of its people.”
“Every golfer is on his honor. As long as we keep golf a game of honor, we’re on the right road.”
Allow us to add one more, as a bonus:
“My friends laughed at me,” Ross said in 1930. “They said it was folly to try to make a winter golf colony down in the jack pines and sand of Carolina.”