Executive Chef - Owner Partner
Born in the Netherlands, Baptist Knaven spent his formative years studying and working in the south of France and other regions of the Mediterranean. “My passion became mastering the cuisines of France and the Mediterranean. I understood the important role local farmers and producers played in the quality of the cuisines and wanted to create dishes that exemplified the essential relationship between the farm, the artisan producer and the table.”
Throughout his career, it has been Chef Baptist’s motivation to create exciting menus and dishes that exemplify this relationship. “The joy of being in Carrboro, with its Farmers’ Market and plentitude of local producers,” Chef Baptist says, “is the opportunity to showcase the best in local, seasonal products.”
Chef Baptist Knaven came to the United States in 2003 and earned accolades at his wildly successful Mediterranean restaurant, Café Zito, located on the North Carolina coast. Moving to the Triangle, he joined restaurant Provence to work alongside former owner and creator Felix Roux, a French native of the Provence region.
In 2011, Baptist partnered with retired neurosurgeon Dr. Jerry King. They worked together to plan the future of Restaurant Provence. After redesigning the menu, updating the patio and interior, they decided to take over Provence in 2012, and turn it into what it is today.