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Trey Dutton

Owner, Southern Keep
Executive Chef, 1KEPT

When did you first become interested in your field of work?
I spent lots of time in my grandmothers’ kitchens growing up, but began to seriously consider this as a career in high school.

What made you decide to go to CIC?
The cost of the education vs. comparable culinary institutions was too good to pass up.

What was the most important thing that you learned at CIC?
To continually ask myself, “How can this be better?”

What was your first paid position in your field?
Mike Lata hired me at Anson in 2000 for $7.25 per hour. I originally went in to apply for a server’s position, but here I am.

What has been the highlight in your career so far?
Too many to list. I’ve worked with over 20 James Beard Award-winning chefs, and have cooked for more celebrities than I can count.

What would be your advice for CIC students?
Expose yourself to as much as possible, volunteer for everything! You’ll get to work with lots of incredible people which will open lots of doors in your career. Never sacrifice your integrity—ever. And don’t go to bars in your chef coat.