Almost a year ago, chef David Carte decided to take a leap of faith and become owner and operator of the Fiddlehead Restaurant at Snowshoe.
It was one of those perfect timing kind of things where Carte saw an opportunity to own a restaurant and he jumped at the chance. He has been in the culinary field from the age of 15, so it was a natural fit.
“I’ve been in restaurants almost twenty years,” he said. “Most of it comes natural. This is my favorite spot in the county for a restaurant. I love the people in this town. It’s great.”
Having a passion for food from a young age, Carte attended Johnson and Wales where he received an Associate’s Degree in culinary arts. Later he went back to school to earn a Bachelor’s Degree in nutrition.
Food is important, but even more important is the customer. That is why Carte prides himself on using the best ingredients possible.
“The last place I worked, they always pushed it – ‘who’s your boss?’ – the first person on the list is the customer,” Carte said. “They’re the ones spending money. Take care of them and they’ll take care of you. We started doing only local grass-fed beef for our burgers now. Our pepperoni has no nitrates. It’s the good stuff. Bacon. I’m getting no nitrate bacon. I try to take care of my customers.”
Carte also utilizes locally grown produce as much as we can by shopping at the Farmers Market and with local growers.
Along with great food – which includes burgers, brick oven pizzas, fish tacos, hand-cut fries, salads and daily specials – the Fiddlehead is a great, relaxing hang-out with a bar and live entertainment.
The Fiddlehead also gives back to the community by hosting the annual Linwood’s Got Talent show. Carte said he is open to hosting more special events.
While there is added pressure as the owner, Carte remains cool and calm because he knows he has a great team working with him.
“Sometimes it gets tough, but honestly, if your team is strong, then you’ll be fine,” he said. “It’s so much about getting everybody to work together well. Without my team I can’t make food.”
At the end of the day, the food is key for Carte and that is where the Fiddlehead thrives.
“I love being in the kitchen, making food and making people happy,” he said. “That’s the best part.”
The Fiddlehead Restaurant is open Wednesday through Saturday, 4 to 10 p.m., and for Sunday brunch, noon to 4 p.m.