This is Noelle, a spunky and outgoing part of the Red Ginger team for an upwards of nine years. Known for her master dumpling and spring roll making skills, she is one of the superstars of our prep team. Hailing from Thailand, she brings a new kind of passion for Asian cuisine to our family.
Noelle came to Traverse City at the tender age of eight after being adopted by her loving family, consisting of her mother, father and 17 siblings. Her adoptive mother first saw her in a magazine and knew, at that moment, that she wanted to make that sweet baby girl a part of her family.
Noelle got to where she is today from humble beginnings. As a young girl, she would help her mother in the kitchen by washing dishes. However, Noelle was interested in what she calls “the fun stuff,” being the preparation and the cooking processes. While she didn’t go to culinary school, she learned everything she knows right here at Red Ginger. She even had to overcome her fear of knives! In fact, she started off as a dishwasher, and as time went on, Executive Chef Dan Marsh asked if she wanted to be involved in pastry making and food prep, as Noelle’s small hands are perfect for working with dumplings, potstickers, and spring rolls.
Noelle knows that when it comes to making our famous spring rolls, all of the fillings are made from scratch and are made with many different ingredients. She shares that mastering the rolling of spring rolls is quite an art; they must be wrapped nice and tight with no corners sticking out. Otherwise, they will come apart and the corners will burn. According to Noelle, “Everything that we do has to be perfection.”
This is Karon. Hailing from Jamaica, he brings determination and a thirst for accomplishment to the Red Ginger team. With over 19 years of experience, he takes pride in letting his passion for food shine through in everything he does when prepping for service.
Karon’s culinary journey began at the age of nineteen when he was still living in Jamaica. His mother had shared with him that there was an opening. He started working in a pantry and was told that he had the potential to “move up the ladder.” He took the challenge, continuing to push himself in the kitchen, and that lead him to where he is today.
Karon first arrived in Traverse City in 2001 and has been a member of the Red Ginger prep team for 8 years. When he travels back to Jamaica, he finds opportunities to discover new flavors that he can share with his two children, as well as his fellow team members at Red Ginger. In fact, Karon loves making Jamaican food at home, including Jerk Chicken, one of his favorites dishes.
When it comes to his role on the prep team, Karon’s passion for food shines through in everything he does. With his day starting at 7:ooam, one of his daily tasks is to be sure that the tasks that need to be done for service are complete in a timely manner. Karon explains that “we all have specific jobs that we do that all come together in the end. We really are a team here.” He takes pride in the work that he does, knowing that at the end of the day, he played a key role in providing the quality food that makes the Red Ginger dining experience second to none.