DineAbility Personal Chefs & Catering in Wilmington, Delaware - DineAbility

personal chef delaware

Looking for a Personal Chef or Someone to Cater Your Party or Event?

Chef John Jones of Wimington, Delaware Brings His 20+ Years Experience in Fine Dining to Your Dinner Table!

IMG_20161229_163213_667My Vision:  To utilize my culinary knowledge and technical skills to provide in-home and on premise professional chef services. For the individuals who may not have time to cook healthy meals, but are tired of unhealthy and costly take out, may have special dietary restrictions or special event needs. Our goal is simple, we will provide your needs with a fresh, seasonal and nutritious option for all of these needs in a cost effective way that will maximize your resources while utilizing our culinary expertise.

"I met John in 2000. We have worked together in many restaurants, he still helps me with catering. John is a hard worker. He's very creative and even tempered. Shares a great sense of humor. Very important qualities in a kitchen environment. We also share the love of West Virginia. I respect and admire him as a chef and a friend."

- Chef Jamie Nardozzi


Welcome to Cooking Coaster, were we provide a fresh and seasonal customized personal cuisine focused on the unique needs and preferences of our clients. We offer personal chef services, catering for special events and cooking lessons to the people of New Castle County DE and surrounding areas in the Delaware Valley. You are what you eat and that requires your full participation, so let Cooking Coaster be your guide to a great food experience!


Personal Chef Services

Don’t have time to prepare quality home cooked meals? Allow Cooking Coaster to help you reclaim and enjoy your family meal time with fresh, seasonal menu options catered to your family’s needs and personal preferences. Give us the opportunity to make your life easier and we will take care of the rest!


Are you planning a special event? Cooking Coaster will create a menu for any event, family or formal dinner parties, baby showers, graduations or even holiday gatherings. We offer you our expertise in designing a menu that will not only provides you with top notch chef services but quality seasonal, nutritious and fresh options for you next special occasion.

Cooking Lessons for Couples and Groups

With social media and television focusing very heavily on the culinary industry, more people than ever have developed an interest for cooking.  Allow Cooking Coaster to help you to highlight a specific cuisine, ingredient or style of cooking. We are also proficient in pairing specific foods with wines and beers, which is part of a growing food culture. Either in-home or at a chosen venue, cooking lessons or demonstrations will enhance your life experiences with associates and the people that you love. We can provide you with knowledge of specific ingredients, cuisines, basic kitchen technical skills, menu development and cooking techniques from a seasoned chef of many years.

How It Works: Personal Chef Services

Step 1: we offer complimentary consultation with the chef to ascertain likes, dislikes, dietary needs, budget, allergies, number of meals, family schedule, family size and anything that the chef may need to know to create the best possible options and meal plan for your family.

Step 2: We create a meal plan that fits you your budget and works for you, catered to you, created by you. Some ingredients may not be in season or available at which time you will be consulted and ask to either select a comparable item or we will revise you meal plan to accommodate these changes. After receiving your menu plan, you may make changes, recreate the menu or simply give the chef a recommendation to carry on with the menu that was originally created for you. You will always have prior approval of the meal plan and budget.

Step 3: Shopping for the meal plan will be based on the budget that you will set. It must fall within the range for reasonable market pricing of any major food vendor or local markets. You may accompany the chef while shopping for your menu. It’s your choice were to shop for ingredients or use may use the chefs discretion. Some menus may require special items for the purpose of the meal plan, dietary restrictions or an event, but we will only purchase what is needed for each event or meal plan. There will not be any mark-up on any food purchased, all food purchased will be at cost. Certain ingredients may only be offered in bulk but no purchase will be made without your prior consent.

Step 4: Once the chef has purchased the ingredients for your menu or event, the chef will then begin to prepare your meals. After the meals are cooked you will then be presented an invoice by email on the day of delivery of services.

Step 5: Cooking Coaster can either prepare your meals in our kitchen or in your kitchen, leaving it clean and your home smelling delicious. You may request throw away containers at cost or you can provide us with the containers that you prefer. Each meal plan will come with detailed thawing, reheating and serving instructions. We are always available mon-sun 8am until 8pm. Reach us via email, text message or phone.

How event Catering Works:

We can prepare meals in-home or on premise at a venue of your choosing, the client will be responsible for booking the venue. We can set up buffet style or plated meals with courses up to 50 people.

Step 1: we offer complimentary consultation with the chef to ascertain likes, dislikes, dietary needs, budget, allergies and number of people attending the event, scheduling and anything that the chef may need to know to create the best possible menu options for your specific event.

Step 2: Create a menu of your choosing based on your needs.

Step 3: Make a decision on were to source the ingredient for the event and whatever else you may need to serve the meal (plates, utensils, cup, ect.)Food will need to be purchased no later than 24-48hrs in advance if you plan to prepare the food in-home or at a venue. If food is being prepared in our kitchen and we are responsible for purchasing the ingredients, a deposit for the cost of food and or equipment rentals will need to be submitted no later than a week prior to the event.

Step 4: Choose a location for your event and were the food will be prepared. Any food prepared outside of your kitchen will only be served buffet style and multiple chefs will result in an additional service fee.

Step 5: After services are rendered you will then be presented an invoice by email or in person, on the day of the event.

How the lessons work:

Step 1: we offer complimentary consultation with the chef to ascertain likes, dislikes, dietary needs, budget, allergies and number of people attending the event, scheduling and anything that the chef may need to know to create the best possible menu options for your specific event.

Step 2: Establish what the lesson will be about whether it is technique, cuisine, food pairings or demos. We can construct a menu that is customized to your needs.

Step 3: Schedule a day to gather our ingredients and discuss them while shopping.

Step 4: Schedule the time and location of the lesson and for the amount of people attending, up to 12 people.

Step 5: At the time of the event you and your guests will be instructed step by step how to prepare your menu.

Step 6: After services are rendered you will then be presented an invoice by email or in person, on the day of the event.

Commonly Asked Questions:

What are your qualifications? I have 22 years in the food industry, a graduate of Delaware Technical and Community College, Serve Safe certified, I have been involved in personal chef services since 2012, I have ran the day to day operations for several a la carte, venue and catering kitchens.

What does a personal chef do? We prepare customized meals in your home for you and your family; we will create meal plans, shop for ingredients and cook. When the preparation and packaging is completed we clean-up after ourselves, leaving only the aroma of your cooked meals. As a long time Chef in the restaurant kitchen, I had to learn how to properly utilize my time and as a personal chef time management it key because you may be servicing several families at the same time. Lastly the difference between a personal and private chef is a private chef only work for one client exclusively.

Who would use personal chef service? Anybody could benefit from a personal chef but we are especially helpful to busy professionals that lack the time or expertise to produce quality meals, busy families who want to enjoy a family style meal at their dinner table but time will not permit, individuals that may have dietary restrictions and need our expertise in constructing a meal plan that work best for their health condition or life style, nursing mothers who may have multiple children and cannot devote the needed time to provide family meals, athletes that may require specialized diets for their training. Personal chefs are useful in all walks of life for a wide range of people with a wide variety of needs.

Is it affordable? The answer is unequivocally yes! Ask yourself how much time you spend in a week planning menus, traveling back and forth to the market, cooking meals and cleaning up afterward. How much is your time worth to you? It is our job to create meals that work best with your budget and allows you to eat delicious home cooked meals in the comfort of your own home with your family. You will also save money on eating out and take-out meals.

Where are the meals prepared?  In-home preparation is preferable, due to health department regulations in many states.  I am working in a state that borders three other states that we may potentially service, all of which have different regulations for commercial food preparation. We also provide meals that will be prepared and packaged in disposable containers or containers provided by the client.

How many people do you cater at a time? We can comfortable serve up to 50 people in-home, buffet style or plated. If you just need appetizers or buffet style service, we can accommodate up to 100 people.

Where do you get your food? We source your food from the grocery store or market of your choosing unless you allow us to make that decision for you.

How does pricing Work? For meal plans we charge a service fee for labor and price per meal, a minimum booking of three meals. Caterings will be priced per person with an addition service fee.

What types of cuisine do you specialize in? We specialize in all cuisines; our chefs are culinary professionals that have experience executing classic American as well as international cuisine. We can cater to your personal preferences.

Do you provide breakfast? We do not provide breakfast in our meal plans but do provide brunch menus for special occasions.

Bio: My Culinary journey began in 1995 in my home town of Morgantown West Virginia, at a fine dining restaurant located in an old turn of the century glass factory called the Glasshouse Grill. The culture that existed there was that of scratch cooking with fresh farm to table ingredients that were available throughout the state. I got a crash course in using these ingredients and was able to build a foundation for what would later be a career in the arts.

I worked my way out of the dish area to eventually the hot line. Along the way I learned the basic cooking skills and techniques that allowed me to perform a wide range of task ask of me by the chefs. After working there for several years I gained enough knowledge and technical skill to now be able to work in any almost any chef’s kitchen.

In 1999 I moved to Newark Delaware in search of an opportunity to become a professional chef. My first chef job started with the Shemmp Restaurant Group in Pike Creek Delaware as sous chef at Tyler Fitzgerald’s and later Horace Shell Hammer’s in Bear. I later followed my executive chef to a new restaurant in Hockessin DE; called Six Paupers were we focused on utilizing the freshest locally sourced ingredients we could find. Surrounded by many farming communities in the area I was able to benefit from some of the freshest high quality products available.

"I had the pleasure to go to an event at the World Café in Wilmington, DE. John Jones was the chef there. The food that was served was excellent tasty done to perfection. John and his staff was pleasant as well as professional. I really enjoyed myself!"
- Betty Wilson of New Castle DE

Needing to Challenge myself a bit more, I accepted an executive sous chef position with Iron Hill Brewery who also perpetuated this fresh scratch-made approach to food, but infused a new and growing beer culture that was also food friendly and conceptually paired brewing beer and it craftsmanship with the culinary arts. I learned so much about ingredient cooking and how to execute at a high level under extreme stress. While working at Iron Hill I was able to attend and successfully graduate with honors from Delaware Technical Institute and Community College with an Associate’s Degree in Culinary Arts.

"I have been in the food service industry and culinary field for 25 years and I have worked with hundreds of individuals and dozens of chefs. Very few have left a listing imprint on me as a cook and a man. Working with Chef John was a lesson not only in the craft of a chef but the art, love and desire to provide people with the most important part of life... sustenance. Chef John's drive to deliver the best, freshest, most innovative and flavorful dishes to everyone that sits at his table is inspiring to say the least.

His ability to oversee the operation of a full service kitchen, create culinary masterpieces and preside as a working Chef is a bar that he sets on a daily basis and should be an industry standard. Not many have the respect both given and received that Chef John has not only for people but food as well. The love of his craft shows through his food and it is on display in all of his actions. I still reminisces over the culinary delights and masterful way in which Chef Jones goes about his craft. That is what we all as Chef strive to achieve."

- Chef David Middleton


In 2006 I took an executive chef position at the Bayard House in Chesapeake City MD, a very old and historic restaurant serving a classical eastern shore cuisine, very well known for their locally sourced seafood and steaks. After a short stint at a few other local eateries I found myself working on the waterfront in Wilmington. With the largest outside eating area in the city, I successfully opened and ran the day to day operations of both C.W Harbor Side and Firestone Roasting House, both of which were high volume scratch kitchens utilizing both local and commercial purveyors. In my time as chef we participated in several local events on and off premise where we made it a priority to emphasis our rustic American cuisine in which we would use only the best possible ingredients available.

In 2010 I took my expertise to World Café live at the Queen in down town Wilmington. As chef I oversaw the day to day of operations of two separate a la carte kitchens and a special events catering kitchen, which at capacity could service up to 1500 patrons. We were tasked with creating special menus for each ticked event in the theater and a smaller stage upstairs. We featured several beer and food events, weddings, birthdays, anniversaries and any special occasions that required food or hordourves. Much of what we did required a tremendous amount of organizational skills because we may have several events going on simultaneously.

After many years in the food industry I decided to step away from the restaurant scene and founded a Cooking Coaster Chef Services in 2012, that would offer services ranging from in-home, on or off premise catering, family meal plans, special occasions, consulting, private lessons, people with special dietary needs and promotional events. I had accumulated a wealth of culinary and organizational knowledge that I believed would allow me to provide a service that could not only utilize my skills but offer people something they themselves may not be able to.

This is not only my profession but food is my passion and it gives me great pleasure to be able to share this passion with people that appreciate what I do as a chef.

"If your a person who loves a success story than John is one you will appreciate. A man with a passion to not only exceed expectations but deliver professional culinary skills that will amaze all. Starting from the bottom and working his way through every challenge he has faced both personally and professionally. John has learned from everything he has faced in life and brought it to "The Table". His talents have made him one of the top culinary artists in the region."

Thanks, Rob



Pricing and Fees:       

Cancellation policy:

  • Meal plans need to be cancelled no less than 72hrs prior to delivery or preparation and 90% of the deposit will be refunded. 10% of the agreed upon payment for services will be held as a processing fee. Less than 72hrs cancelation and payment is due in full.
  • Catered events involving 50 or more people must be cancelled no later than 1 full week prior to the scheduled event. If the party is cancelled the contracted amount will be paid in full.
  • Cooking Coaster reserves the right to make changes or substitutions to menu selections as situations may be effected by weather, seasonal inconsistencies, quality or any issues beyond our control. Client will be informed of any changes prior.
  • Final guest count needs to be confirmed 1 week prior to event.

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