Everyone calls him a chef. Many call him a healer. Meet Chef Bill, the “Gandhi of Gluten Free.” His mission: feed people amazing food while educating them about how a tiny sugar protein called gluten can wreak havoc on your well-being.
Here’s the deal. Food is weird. What we put in our bodies affects our physical, mental, and emotional health more than many of us realize. As a gluten-free chef offering personal chef and catering services tailored to dietary sensitivities, Chef Bill is raising awareness one meal at a time.
Raised on gourmet fare such as his mother’s herb-crusted salmon with demi-glaze, he knew from a young age that he wanted to be a chef. Yet it wasn’t until he went gluten-free that Chef Bill realized his interest in feeding people was more than a passion.
It was and is his life’s calling.
As a teenager, he cut his culinary chops at the Old Orchard Country Club and studied restaurant management at the University of Wisconsin-Stout. He was soon working professional kitchens throughout Chicagoland, including Chessie’s in Barrington, Olive Garden, Bennigan’s, and then Carlucci’s and Rosebud. During this time, he also earned a bachelor’s degree from DePaul University.
Chef Bill then took a hiatus from the restaurant world—17 years working in advertising and corporate media—but the culinary bug didn’t disappear. He and his sister, Kitty, talked about launching their own catering business. Her untimely death in 2008 fueled Chef Bill’s resolve to make that dream a reality.
He soon received his formal culinary education at Chicago’s Kendall College, where he trained under award-winning French chef Pierre Pollin and nutritionist Sara Haas. While in school then after graduation, Chef Bill also brought his skills to Chicago’s Blue Plate Catering, winner of a 2009 James Beard Award for “Best Caterer in America.” He graduated in 2010 as a certified personal chef and caterer and opened Beau K Catering with his partner, Sheila. Their popular private dinner and corporate team-building Sushi making parties soon put the company on the Chicagoland map.
Then, everything changed.
In 2011 Chef Bill’s life took an unexpected turn that would forever redefine how he thought about food. When an immediate family member was diagnosed with ADD/ADHD, he started researching dietary alternatives to medication, as well as sensitivities that could be causing problems. All signs pointed to gluten as a potential culprit. Found in all grain, it is the wheat, rye, and barley, where gluten is ever-present in the typical American diet that gives many people issues. The further Chef Bill delved, the more he realized just how deep this gluten-sensitivity might run: his family’s history of diabetes, the addictions that killed his sister, his own emotional and physical struggles.
Could it all come down to this one protein?
Chef Bill soon removed all gluten from his diet. Nearly overnight (or about 5 days), he experienced greater clarity of thought, emotional balance, and peace of mind. Plus, he lost over 30lbs. The results were transformative, empowering him to become the person he always knew he was and wanted to be—all simply by removing gluten from his diet.
As Harry Caray used to say, “Holy Cow!”
Today, Chef Bill is committed to spreading the word to anyone who will listen to discovering his or her true self through what you eat. Beau K offers comprehensive gluten-free (and dairy free) initiative programs for restaurateurs, families, and individuals as well as fresh, non-GMO meal delivery services but still caters small events (up to 80) and team-building Sushi-making events and will always keep what made him who he is today by catering intimate, private and/or corporate dinner parties in the comfort of your own home.
Curious what going gluten-free could do for you?