Charles Hunter

General Manager of Eleven Clinton, Smothered Blues, Charles Hunter, began his journey in the restaurant industry at the young age of seventeen. It was during his early years, starting as a cater waiter at Terrace on the Park in Flushing–Meadows Queens that the seed was first planted and his love for cooking and bringing memorable experiences to patrons, began to blossom. From there he went on to fulfill the position of maitre d with Dante’s Catering. After college, Charles found himself working on Wall Street but after a few short years, responded to his desire and made his way back to the restaurant industry. It was the words of his close friend which made him realize his potential to build and lead restaurants. Over the next decade he went on to serve as General Manager of IHOP in Philadelphia; opened Bertucci’s Brick Oven Pizza and Pasta in Atlanta and the surrounding region consisting of 6 restaurants, during which time he set unprecedented records when he opened the Peachtree Street location for the 1996 Olympics.

Upon returning to New York, Barbara Smith sought Charles out for the opening of B. Smith’s Sag Harbor in 1997. After running Sag Harbor for a few years, Charles went on to open up the Restaurant Row location of B. Smith’s. Following a great loss, the passing of his father, Charles reemerged as the East Coast Regional Manager for Bloomingdales Food Services. Over the years, Charles went on to lead a host of other establishments in the capacity of General Manager and recently crossed paths with Paul Profeta and the two immediately combined powers to open Eleven Clinton in Newark, New Jersey, bringing farm-to-table soulfood with a unique Smothered Blues experience.

Although Charles believes in giving his Chef the room to flourish, he remains passionate about cooking and continues to do so on a regular basis, in his free time. Completely immersed in the work of creating a great experience, Charles values the opportunity to be able to step back and witness the positive affect his work and contributions has on the guests at his table.