Adolphus Johnson, General Manager
Adolphus was born and nurtured in the suburbs of St. Louis, attending Lutheran North High School. When the high school adventures came to a conclusion his educational campaign resumed at Tuskagee University in Alabama. After completing his collegiate studies Adolphus returned home to pursue a career in Retail Management and Hospitality where his infectious and positive attitude helped him succeed.
Adolphus joined the Vin de Set team in the spring of 2011 as a server and through the seasons he has worked his way slowly up the ranks, wearing multiple hats for the company. Showing great passion for guest satisfaction made him a great fit for the Hamilton Hospitality family and he now owns the title of General Manager.
When not at Vin de Set Adolphus loves attending sporting events, traveling, and spending quality time with friends and family. He is a loving and proud father of two.
Ryan Buettner, Executive Chef
Ryan was born and raised in the St. Louis area and is a graduate of Lindbergh High School and the Forest Park Culinary program.
While in culinary school Ryan worked at Sunset 44 and was promoted to a management position upon graduation. After a year and a half Ryan accepted the Executive Chef position at Old Hickory Golf Club, where he spent the last three years. He is an active member of the local chapter of the American Culinary Federation and enjoys learning and teaching new culinary trends and techniques.
Ryan is married to his wife Sarah, also a Vin de Set team member and they had their first son, Oliver, in May 2012. They are both very into food and wine and have aspirations of having their own restaurant one day. Ryan is very excited to work with this team and to carry on the culinary traditions and standards established by his predecessors.
Jon Dreja, Executive Sous Chef
Jon was born and raised in upstate NY. He moved to St Louis when he was 19 and started his culinary career. After working in several restaurants and country clubs, he found his way to 1111 Mississippi in 2011 as the sous chef. Within a few months, he was promoted to executive sous chef at Vin de Set. Near the end of 2012, he received an executive chef position for Franco and spent over 3 years running their kitchen and helping set the foundation for its sister restaurant Salt+Smoke. After the closing of Franco in February, Jon eventually came back to Vin de Set as executive sous chef.
Jason Arnold, Director of Operations, Moulin Events and Meetings, Vin de Set,
PW Pizza & 21st Street Brewers Bar
Jason Arnold is the Director of Operations and joined the Hamilton Hospitality team in 2006 as part of the opening team for the renovation and operation of the building at 2017 Chouteau Avenue. He currently oversees facility operations and has a team of twenty five managers, chefs and sales professionals that report to him.
Jason has been in the hospitality business for more than three decades, from hotels and resorts to cruise lines and restaurants. After graduating from the Cornell University, School of Hotel Administration, he worked for Hyatt Hotels and Resorts as the Banquet Manager and Beverage Manager in Aruba and Pittsburgh, PA. A couple of years into his Hyatt career, he was hired into the Clipper Cruise line family and thus began the long friendship with Paul and Wendy Hamilton, Scott Gaghan and Bob Colosimo.
As the Director of Purchasing for Clipper Cruise line, Jason was afforded the opportunity to travel on five continents while learning and experiencing local food and wine customs, ingredients and purchasing them for the ship’s arrival. When the opportunity to return home to upstate New York and run a group of TV stations with friends arose, Jason changed gears and took over operations for Lilly Broadcasting LLC.
For more than six years, Jason and his family lived in the beautiful Finger Lakes region of New York while running the local ABC and WB Television stations, making them the number one group in the market. This experience prepared Jason with the financial and marketing acumen to return to St. Louis and work with longtime friends overseeing the creation and opening of Vin de Set Rooftop Bar and Bistro, Moulin Events, the Malt House Cellar, PW Pizza and 21st Street Brewer’s bar. Jason works closely with the team at Moulin Events which has grown from 3 private rooms to eight private rooms and multiple house created events.
In 2008, Jason created the Centennial Beer Festival, which is now one of St. Louis’ premiere craft beer festivals attracting over 80 breweries and 2,000 guests. Jason’s passion for the history and re-birth of the St. Louis Brewery scene has guided the company’s beer program that includes year round collaborations with local, domestic and international breweries at all the businesses.
Jason is married, has two children and is very involved in the United Way and the Food Bank of St. Louis. He is also a member of the Cornell Hotel Society and serves as a trustee for New York Alpha Alumni Organization.