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Chef Rob Masone of Rock Hill selected as a SC Chef Ambassador

Chef Rob Masone of Rock Hill selected

as an SC Chef Ambassador

ROCK HILL, SC (January 26, 2023) – Chef Rob Masone of Kounter and Kre8 Xperiences in Rock Hill, South Carolina, has been selected as a 2023 South Carolina Chef Ambassador. Chef Masone is one of three culinary experts selected to represent South Carolina at food festivals, media events and other forums. 

Lt. Gov. Pamela Evette made the announcement on behalf of Gov. Henry McMaster, along with Commissioner of Agriculture Hugh Weathers and Department of Parks, Recreation and Tourism Duane Parrish.

“We are proud to have these three outstanding chefs represent South Carolina this year as Chef Ambassadors,” Gov. McMaster said. “The incredible culinary skill of these chefs and other chefs like them around our state greatly strengthens our cultural heritage and helps to bring millions of visitors to our state each year.”

About the South Carolina Chef Ambassador Program

The South Carolina Chef Ambassador program was started in 2014 by Gov. Nikki Haley to highlight the state’s talented chefs, creative recipes, authentic cuisines, locally grown produce and unique products. Tourism and agriculture both have a significant impact on the state, contributing tens of billions of dollars to the state’s economy each year and accounting for hundreds of thousands of jobs statewide, according to South Carolina Parks, Recreation & Tourism. The program was created to unite these two major industries while promoting South Carolina as a top culinary destination.

About Chef Rob Masone

Chef Masone’s restaurant, Kounter, is located in the heart of his hometown, Rock Hill, South Carolina. It occupies the former McCrory’s Five & Dime site, where activists staged a peaceful sit-in protest at the segregated lunch counter in 1961. Committed to preserving and sharing the story of Friendship 9, Chef Masone restored the building’s history, including the original lunch counter. He is also the founder and operator of the Gathering Space, an event space adjacent to the restaurant. His catering and events service business, Kre8 Xperiences, continues to serve the area with a highly successful food truck, Twisted Eats. 

“I am honored to be selected as a 2023 South Carolina Chef Ambassador,” says Chef Rob Masone. “I hope to inspire those to follow their culinary passions whether at home or in a professional setting, to motivate people to eat and spend locally and most importantly that it’s perfectly ok to ‘Play with your Food.'”

“Chef Masone is an active advocate for tourism and the hospitality sector in York County,” says Andy Clinton, president and CEO of Visit York County, the destination marketing organization for York County. “He is actively involved in local workforce development efforts to support a thriving hospitality talent pipeline. Last summer, Chef Masone even started a Sunday Supper Club dinner series to support increased business and foot traffic for Rock Hill’s Main Street businesses.”

“Chef Masone is highly recognized in York County as a leader in the restaurant industry,” says Jenny Parrish, executive director of the Olde English District Tourism Commission, the destination marketing organization for South Carolina’s Piedmont region. “Not only do locals love his dishes, but visitors alike flock to Kounter to try the food and learn more about the restaurants’ history and significance.”

For more information on the SC Chef Ambassador program, please visit their site or the Chef Ambassador program.