FX Excursions

FX Excursions offers the chance for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in destinations around the world.

Executive Chef Todd Kelly, Orchids at Palm Court, Cincinnati

by Kimberly Krol Inlander

Nov 4, 2015
2015

Living on the island of Mauritius off the coast of South Africa as a young boy, Todd Kelly, New York native and current executive chef of Orchids at Palm Court in Cincinnati, tried to bring the flavors of home to the island, using local ingredients. This early start, which included cooking with fish sold door to door by locals and fresh bread delivered via moped, sparked the culinary passion in Kelly.

Executive Chef Todd Kelly

Executive Chef Todd Kelly © Hilton Cincinnati Netherland Plaza

After studying at the American Academy of Independent Studies, Kelly worked in restaurants around the country such as Ember Grille/Bar 10 at The Westin in Charlotte, N.C.; Peter James Townhouse, also in Charlotte; and Rubicon in San Francisco. In 2006, he moved to the AAA Five-Diamond-rated Orchids at Palm Court at the Hilton Cincinnati Netherland Plaza. The French-inspired cuisine has earned the restaurant numerous awards and honors. Kelly himself is also decorated as one of only six Hilton Signature Chefs in the United States and the 2011 American Culinary Federation USA Chef of the Year.

Kelly also handles the culinary operations at The Grille at Palm Court and The Bar at Palm Court as well as in-room dining and banquet/wedding menus. Under Kelly’s direction, all the culinary outlets at Hilton Cincinnati Netherland Plaza maintain the standards set at Orchids.

His culinary skills translate outside of the restaurant. On his family-owned small farm, Kelly and his wife, Emily, grow seasonal fruits and vegetables and teach their daughters about food production. He also runs and has completed multiple marathons.

What three go-to ingredients are always in your home kitchen?
Corn tortillas, Cholula hot sauce and good Dijon mustard, preferably Maille

What’s your favorite season for cooking, and why?
That’s a tough one to answer; they are all special in their own way. If I had to pick one, it would be spring. You have so many wonderful ingredients — ramps, morels, green garlic, dandelion greens and so on. All of the ingredients have such unique and wonderful flavors that you don’t really have to do much to showcase them.

Aside from your current position, what’s the best job you’ve ever had?
Working as the sous chef at Rubicon in San Francisco — we didn’t carry any food over from the previous day. So every day was like starting from scratch. It taught me a lot about organization and discipline. The culture with the food seasons was also a great experience. We didn’t use ingredients unless they were at the peak of the season. If the chef didn’t feel they were the best they could be, we just didn’t use them.

What’s the first meal you ever cooked?
Steak frites at around 12 years old, living on the island of Mauritius in the middle of the Indian Ocean. My brother and I were trying to duplicate the flavor of home.

What are your first thoughts when you hear “farm-to-table”?
Trendy — seems the current farm-to-table movement is really people trying to catch up to what all the top chefs have been doing forever. I have been privileged to work around the country with great agricultures, so farm-to-table is just something that happens.

Orchids at Palm Court

Hilton Cincinnati Netherland Plaza
35 W. Fifth St.
Cincinnati, OH 45202
tel 513 421 9100
orchidsatpalmcourt.com

Introducing

FX Excursions

FX Excursions offers the chance for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in destinations around the world.

#globility

Insta Feed
Daily
Nov 29, 2022

Hide Away in the Scottish Highlands with 57 Nord

Situated deep within the Scottish Highlands, just steps from many lakes and mountains, lies 57 Nord. This collection of two design-led boutique hideaways blends the region’s Norse-Gael heritage by incorporating Scottish craftsmanship, modern Scandinavian design and panoramic views into both structures.

Los Cabos Sets Your Vacation Apart
from the Rest

Whether you prefer a villa on the beach or an ultra-luxe suite downtown, you’ll find everything you’re looking for in Los Cabos.

Daily
Nov 29, 2022

Luxury Art Deco Lodging Sommerro Opens in Oslo

Oslo’s Art Deco connections just grew stronger with the opening of Sommerro, housed within a historic building in the city’s West End neighborhood of Frogner. The structure itself was once the location of the city’s original electrical company, Oslo Lysverker. The conversion to urban, luxury lodging features 231 guestrooms, 56 residences, seven restaurant and bar options, and meeting and event spaces for up to 150 people. There’s also a 100-seat gilded theater and expansive wellness space, including a full-service gym and Oslo’s first, year-round rooftop pool, sauna and terrace.

Daily
Nov 29, 2022

Key West Airport Breaks Ground on $100 Million Expansion

Key West International Airport recently held a groundbreaking ceremony to mark the start of its $100 million expansion. Roman Gastesi, administrator, Monroe County; Richard Strickland, director of airports; and others attended the ceremony and outlined details of the Concourse A terminal expansion project.

6,000 Reasons and More to Celebrate!

IHG® Hotels & Resorts certainly has a lot to celebrate, starting with an incredible growth story. Over the past five years, IHG has acquired or launched six new brands: Six Senses® Hotels Resorts Spas, Regent® Hotels & Resorts, Vignette™ Collection, voco™ hotels, avid® hotels and Atwell Suites™. Most recently, IHG reached an important milestone with its 6,000th open hotel. The company looks to further expand its portfolio by 30 percent with 1,800 hotels in the development pipeline, with significant focus on growth in the luxury segment where IHG is positioned as one of the top two hotel chains.

Daily
Nov 28, 2022

World’s Most Underrated Travel Experiences

Adventure tour operator Explore Worldwide recently conducted a study to find the most underrated travel experiences around the world. The operator analyzed more than 350 lesser-known destinations and experiences across more than 130 countries, ranking them based on how high its Trip Advisor score fared against how many people actually reviewed the activity and how many Google searches the experience received.

Daily
Nov 24, 2022

Angama To Open Deluxe Lodge Near Kilimanjaro

Lodging and hospitality company Angama announced the November 2023 opening of Angama Amboseli, an intimate, 10-suite lodge set in Kenya’s private, 5,700-acre Kimana Sanctuary, against the iconic backdrop of Mount Kilimanjaro, located just across the border in Tanzania.

TAP Air Portugal’s Porto

When American travelers make plans to visit Portugal, Lisbon is usually their first stop.

Daily
Nov 24, 2022

Emerald Cruises Announces Significant Savings in Black Friday Sale

There is nothing better than the gift of travel. Instead of giving your loved ones material items, give them an experience they will never forget. This year, Emerald Cruises offers excellent Black Friday deals on Europe and Southeast Asia river cruises, as well as on the latest collection of luxury ocean yacht sailings on Emerald Azzurra and Emerald Sakara.