Majestic Cafe

911 King Street, Alexandria, VA 22314
703-837-9117

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Executive Chef Shannon Overmiller

Shannon Overmiller’'s childhood greatly influenced her culinary career and her Mid-Atlantic background continues to shine through her cuisine today. Growing up near the Patuxent River in Maryland, she gained a great deal of knowledge of food from her father and a group of women including her mother and grandmothers. Although her parents and grandparents passed early on in her life, they instilled in her the ability to embrace not only the passion that life brings but also the hardship. Overmiller was taught an early love of cooking from the “beautiful, loving group of women,” that helped to raise her. It is this love that continues to drive her in the kitchen today.

She began her professional career as a bartender and waitress at Austin Grill in Washington, DC. Realizing she craved more experience in the kitchen, she then made the shift to Cafe Atlantico, where she worked as a line cook while attending the esteemed L'’Academie de Cuisine in Maryland. In 2002, she graduated and accepted a position at Ristorante Tosca under the direction of Chef/Owner Cesare Lafranconi.

At Tosca, she quickly moved her way up from Line Cook to Pastry Chef to Sous Chef. With a desire to broaden her experience after spending three years at Tosca, Lanfranconi made a phone call to Chef/Owner Cathal Armstrong on Overmiller’'s behalf, which brought her to Restaurant Eve in Old Town Alexandria, Virginia. Chef Armstrong’s leadership taught her about the importance of local vendors and sourcing from local farms, along with honing in on her technical culinary skills. Armstrong added French techniques to Overmiller'’s Italian preparation, and soon she found a balance between both of her mentors' skills.

As a 2004 Jean-Louis Palladin Foundation award recipient, Overmiller had the opportunity of a lifetime to travel to Italy and learn about ingredients and cooking techniques. Her repertoire of hand made pasta remains one of her fortes. Diners will find either Spaghetti, Cavatelli, Orecchiette among many others to be featured daily to the delight of many vegetarians.

Overmiller also offers simple rustic cuisine of both the Virginia seaboard and countryside, including dishes such as Rack of Lamb, Roast Chicken, Home-style Meatloaf and the delights of the ever-changing ‘Nana’s Sunday Dinner’. For her, food is all in the details. Her delicate touch and patience make her dishes stand out.

She has proven herself in many kitchens and now at the reins of The Majestic, her life lessons and her culinary training are in play. She continues to learn more every day with each new experience, but prides herself in her ability to teach her staff as well. This is essential in her kitchen, as she looks for young minds similar to her own. It is this youthful focus combined with classical training that will carry the Majestic to new heights.

The Majestic’s dedication to local Virginia stems from ‘her’ many years of family ties to Old Town Alexandria. ‘She’ stands as a place of tribute …with a new, young and talented chef that believes in her.

Executive Chef Shannon Overmiller

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