Back in the mid-1980s, Jim and Candy Jeltema took their experience as executives at Mackinac Island’s Grand Hotel to Saugatuck, MI where they set out on a journey to create something special of their own. Fast forward to the present day and the vision of the Jeltema’s has truly taken shape. With a lot of blood, sweat, and tears, Clearbrook has been reinvented into not only a premier golf location but also as a destination for great food. The dining area, The Grill Room, has become a staple for members, locals, and vacationers, alike. Much of the success of their on-premise restaurant can be attributed to their current, longstanding staff that is led by Executive Chef Mike Gaetano. We sat down with Chef Mike to discuss his role at Clearbrook and how he has become such an intricate part of the Jeltema’s vision.
For those who know and love Clearbrook Golf Club, the experience does not necessarily revolve around the golf itself. For most championship golf courses, this might be odd to say but Clearbrook is not defined by golf alone. When Jim and Candy Jeltema set out to shape a place of their own, they did so through a passion for hospitality that can be witnessed in all aspects of their business. Whether you’re a long-time member or a first-time vacationer, you’ll truly feel like a guest at Clearbrook. A genuine sense of love radiates through this place that you can see from the dedication to the pristine landscaping to the perfectly plated food.
As for the food, The Grill Room is Clearbrook’s full-service restaurant and bar that provides all food at the club. The leader of all food operations is Executive Chef Mike Mike Gaetano. Chef Mike has been at Clearbrook for the last nine years. Starting off as a dishwasher and working his way up to being in charge over the past five years has given him a true understanding of the culture at Clearbrook. His experience working in a family bakery and pizzerias in his home state of New Jersey helped provide the customer-first approach that he has today. The restaurant’s motto “Genuine Hospitality” is truly embraced by all staff members and this is a testament to Chef Mike who has made this a priority. In his words, it’s about has made this a priority. In his words, it’s about creating consistency that leads to guests trusting the food coming from The Grill Room. With their ‘from scratch’ kitchen that is producing such things as house-made breads, sauces, and desserts, it is easy to see why guests trust Chef Mike and his staff. Their food is made with love.
Clearbrook is a quintessential customer of Superior Foods. In the same way that Chef Mike has gained the trust of his customers through consistency, Superior Foods has strived to achieve the same through the trust of Chef Mike and the Jeltema’s. Superior representative Tommie Gatlin and culinary leader Chef Jeff Brandon, along with many others, have been instrumental in creating this valued partnership. Yes, food is important but the true value has come through the relationship that has been built with trust from the individuals at Clearbrook.
FEATURED MENU ITEM
Parmigiana Crusted Pork Chop
This is not your ordinary pork chop. This dish starts with an All-Natural 16 oz. Bone-In Pork Chop that is locally sourced from our partners at DeVries Pork Farm located just 30 miles from the restaurant in Coopersville, MI. The chop is covered in an appetizing crust of mozzarella and is served with Gemelli pasta and house-made marinara sauce. Roasted garlic and Kalamata olives tie this dish together to make every bite mouthwatering. The quality of the pork, the culinary expertise, and the presentation of this dish truly make this a one-of-a-kind entree and an all-time favorite of ours.
6494 Clearbrook Dr., Saugatuck, MI 49453