As Berg Hospitality Group's Chief Hospitality Officer, Darren McDonald has more than 47 years of experience in the restaurant and hospitality industry mostly working for upscale steakhouses in major cities across the country. Born in Long Island, he has lived and worked extensively in 11 states and managed 14 restaurants.
McDonald was introduced to the industry through his grandfather who owned and operated a butcher shop in Queens during the Great Depression, but got his first taste of fine dining and formal service in 1973 as a busboy at a French restaurant in his hometown. He soon moved to Smith & Wollensky where he worked for 23 years, playing a vital role in the restaurant's successful expansion across key markets in the U.S. McDonald also cultivated hospitality industry experience by managing The Fairmont Hotel in Denver and the Lighthouse Sound Golf and Country Club in Maryland.
Before moving to Houston to join the Berg Hospitality corporate team, McDonald served as the managing partner of B&B Butchers & Restaurant in Fort Worth, where he played a vital role in the restaurant's success. Berg Hospitality Group has been a homecoming for McDonald, who previously worked with several team members, including Chief Executive Chef Tommy Elbashary, with whom he opened restaurants in Dallas, Las Vegas and Washington D.C.