Casey Clanton, Director of Leadership
A little soul searching on Casey Clanton’s behalf led her to the 1618 family. She was looking for a work environment that prioritized teamwork and fostered community, and that’s just what she found at 1618 Midtown, where she joined as manager early in 2018.
She was bitten by the restaurant bug early in life. At 13, underage but over excited, Casey took her first job at a small pizza place in Savannah, Georgia, where she spent her after-school hours taking phone orders and serving tables. It wasn’t long before she was hooked, and the rest is history. Casey loves pickles, islands, rosé and the occasional PBR.
She’s an accomplished dancer, with 20 years of experience in ballet, modern and west African dance styles. And although she still takes the occasional class, most of her fancy footwork happens in the living room these days.
Chip Hallman, Executive Chef
Executive Chef Chip Hallman has a passion for whipping up comforting cuisine in 1618’s Midtown kitchen. He got his start as dishwasher/prep cook at a small country club in Richmond and worked his way up the culinary career ladder.
According to Chip, his seven years at 1618 have helped expand his horizons as a chef. He’s learned new and different plating techniques, as well as unexpected food pairings. While he prepares foodie-approved meals at Midtown, Chip tucks into simple southern comfort foods and well-made BBQ off the clock. In his downtime, you’ll find him crafting and researching his own beer at home.
Michael Barbour, Front of House Service Manager
Pumpkin-carving prodigy. Professional binge-watcher. Hometown hero. Michael Barbour marries his wry wit with tenacious attention to detail to provide top-tier hospitality as 1618 Midtown’s front of house service manager.
This Greensboro native started his culinary career as a pizza joint busboy and soon matriculated up to food service at local favorite Lindley Park Filling Station. He joined 1618 in April of 2018 and has since acquired (and put to use) an encyclopedic knowledge of foods and beverages.
Michael’s hidden talent is his “Michelangelo-esque” pumpkin carving game, a skill that draws lots of fans, friends and clueless gourd buyers to his home every fall. But beware of his fridge. It’s basically a graveyard of to-go boxes.
Michael Cates, Bar Manager
Cereal and ramen in the pantry. Pizza rolls in the freezer. Skateboarding as a preferred exercise. Though he’s been in hospitality for decades, Michael Cates adds a dash of youthful exuberance to every cocktail he mixes as 1618 Midtown’s bar manager.
Born in Tacoma, Washington, this Air Force baby moved a bit before landing in his dad’s hometown of Greensboro. Michael started work as a Subway sandwich artist at age 16 and has been with 1618 since 2016. Were he a flavor, Michael identifies as Campari – an acquired taste; the unmistakable, vibrantly red Italian apéritif seems bitter on first blush, but is mixologist-renowned for complex and intriguing flavors.
Stacey Land, VP of Cultural Leadership + Education
Oenophile Stacey Land comes by the restaurant business honestly. Her father was educated at the Culinary Institute of America and she found her passion for the business while working in his restaurants.
Her culinary pedigree and experience in restaurant ownership make Stacey a perfect fit for 1618, where she serves as Vice President of Cultural Leadership and Education, working with managers at all of 1618’s locations. In her spare time, she develops the wine list for Midtown, where her discerning menu selections won the restaurant a 2018 Wine Spectator award.
Stacey was one of the first people in Greensboro to receive the prestigious Certified Sommelier designation in 2017 from the Court of Master Sommeliers, and she is also a Certified Sake Advisor (CSA). In 2016, as one of seven hand-selected guests at Domaine Serene’s Somm Select event in Oregon’s Willamette Valley, Stacey wowed the judges, and came home with a medal for the winning cuvee.
Vickie Kube, Finance Director
Animal whisperer. Manual-drive enthusiast. Piccolo player. Vickie Kube goes above and beyond your idea of the everyday bookkeeper. Not only is she an accounting wiz, but she’s best known for understanding all aspects of food service – the numbers, the team, and the guests.
Born and raised in Greensboro, Vickie started her career de cuisine at Arby’s at age 15. She worked management in several eateries before discovering a knack for paperwork and started accounting classes. She then worked for CPA firms for 15 years before returning to the restaurant industry. Today she’s come full circle, celebrating her seven-year anniversary as a bookkeeper with 1618.
Vickie identifies her personality flavor profile as saucy, as she can be quite sassy at times. There’s not much in her fridge, but she keeps a rack full of red wines close by.
Nick Wilson, Managing Director/Proprietor
How can you call something work when it excites you every morning? Nick Wilson does work at 1618 — he’s the Proprietor after all — but spending time at his Greensboro locations is more fun than anything else. OK, fun would be checking in via FaceTime from a cabin in the mountains, but you get the point. His favorite part of the job? Walking the line of trendy and traditional while assisting with the creation of a high-end beverage program with the latest and greatest beers, wines, bubbles and high-quality cocktails.
Nick landed in Greensboro for college and loved it so much he never left, finding a permanent home here with his tenured, erudite husband Holt, who deserves endless praise — and probably presents — for allowing Nick to ply his trade during the odd hours of a restaurateur. His belief in community change through philanthropy has earned him the Triad Business Journal 40 Under 40 award, an Action Greensboro Made in Greensboro honoree and the Greensboro Chamber Small Business Person of the Year award.
George Neal, Corporate Chef/Proprietor
A Greensboro native, Proprietor George Neal literally grew up in the city’s restaurant community, getting his start washing dishes while finishing up at Page High School. He worked his way up the chain (dishes begot pantry which begot grille which begot executive chef) before starting off on his own with the original 1618 location in 2004.
He experienced two schools of culinary education: he’s industry taught but also classically trained through his work at one of Greensboro’s premier French restaurants, Madison Park. He gained kudos as the winner of the inaugural Fire in the Triad competition. In his free time, he can be found on the golf course or taking his son “Little George” to as many sporting events as he can.