Mixologist Eamon Rockey of Betony - Biography

New York, NY

September 2015

When you grow up in a small town—in this case, Hattiesburg, Mississippi—there’s a chance you’ll find yourself at closer quarters with your parents. If your parents are both working chefs, there’s a chance you’ll end up like Eamon Rockey. Which is to say, fully immersed in the business. Think of it this way—by 14, Rockey was working at Sakura, Hattiesburg’s only sushi restaurant.

Decamping from Mississippi, Rockey studied at the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, New York, where he anticipated graduating as a cook but was instead lured away by the romance of wine and beverage. Moving to New York City to get professional, Rockey was hired at Gilt in 2006 and began working under his first mentor, Chris Day. The next year found him at Eleven Madison Park, where he not only upped his service game but was promoted to captain and bartender.

Now pedigreed in some of New York’s top kitchens, including Atera, Rockey helped open Compose in Tribeca in a managerial role. After managing and developing the beverage program at Scandinavian-inspired Aska, Rockey was poised to open Betony with Bryce Shuman in 2013. The restaurant quickly earned rave reviews and nods, including “Restaurant of the Year” from Esquire, a Michelin star, and a spot on Wine Enthusiast’s “100 Best Wine Restaurants” list.