Hugh Sinclair, a.k.a. Chef Irie, the Global Culinary Architect, is the CEO and Executive Chef of Chef Irie Spice, Inc. – Private Chef and Catering Services, providing food services to the tri-county area of South Florida. Chef Irie hails from St. Catherine, Jamaica, where he grew up on a sugar producing estate – Caymanas Estates. He attended Calabar High School in Kingston and has joyous memories of his childhood. Before settling in Florida, Hugh first migrated with his family to New York. After leaving New York For Jacksonville, he completed his college career at the University of Florida in Gainesville earning a BS from the renowned School of Architecture.
Hugh always had a passion for cooking and felt right at home in the kitchen. After working several years as an architect, the yearning to create culinary masterpieces vs. architectural aesthetics overtook his desires. It was then that Hugh enrolled in Johnson & Wales University’s Culinary Arts program embarking on his culinary journey. Graduating with an Associate Degree in Culinary Arts, he has taken on the South Florida culinary landscape by storm! Being a Personal and Private chef has allowed him to work with entertainers, professional athletes and many of South Florida’s elite.
Chef Irie’s highly anticipated and critically acclaimed TV cooking mini-series, “Taste the Islands with Chef Irie”, debuted nationwide on April 4th in 135 PBS markets. Taste the Islands is the only original Caribbean produced television series featuring a Caribbean born chef on a television network or otherwise. The Gourmand award winning cookbook, “Taste the Islands, Culinary Adventures in A Caribbean Kitchen” is now available for purchase on Amazon.
Chef Irie an be heard on the popular syndicated radio show, The Rickey Smiley Morning show doing the segment “Quarantine Cooking with Chef Irie” on Friday mornings where he brings his larger than life personality to the art of cooking with a Caribbean twist.
Chef Irie has competed and made it to the second round of Food Network’s ever popular series, Cutthroat Kitchen. He has represented the island of Jamaica cooking at the iconic James Beard House in New York for Savour Jamaica; and represented team Jamaica at The United Nations Building for Caribbean Chefs Take Over.
Chef Irie twice represented team Jamaica at South Beach Wine and Food Festival for Taste Jamaica and was Guest Chef twice on Holland America Cruise lines. He has also been the Guest Chef for Bayfest, St. Lucia’s Independence festival, the St. Croix’s Food and wine festival and three times Guest chef for Haiti’s Rum and food festival, Gout et Saveurs Lakay.
He counts his mother as his greatest inspiration and the. Best. Cook. Ever. He credits Jamaica with the vision that education is key to success and his teachers for inspiring him to learn. He is grateful for his opportunities in America and his foundation in Jamaica and how his life has enabled him to infuse Jamaican traditional cooking with world cuisine.