Local cook invites everyone to become a gourmet chef

Mary Ann Conroy

Seared scallop salad with corn relish and fresh basil vinaigrette is just one of the dishes Conroy serves up.

Wes Locher
Published: Friday, July 5, 2013 at 08:09 AM.

Mary Ann Conroy loves to cook, but the restaurant business wasn’t for her.

After working in the banking industry for 30 years and experiencing the economic downturn, she decided to use the opportunity to explore her passions and reinvent herself as a personal chef, founding the local culinary experience known as Gourmet Chef Now.

“I wanted to do something that I was passionate about,” said Conroy, who quickly acquired her catering license to get the ball rolling.

After attending several cooking classes in the Panama City area, she thought that something similar might work in Port St. Joe. Not interested in opening a restaurant and devoting all her time to running it, she saw herself doing something more intimate and decided to host classes for a small group of audience members.

Her mission was to prepare gourmet food simply through an interactive experience that would end in a restaurant-quality meal.

“I love good food with bold flavors, lots of courses and rich sauces,” she said.

In October of last year, Gourmet Chef Now launched in the Appliance Showroom kitchen in Port St. Joe.

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