Meet the Chef & Owners

Dennis Collins
Managing Partner – Food & Beverage, Marketing

Chef Dennis Collins has been in the restaurant and hospitality industry for 15 years. Born in Staten Island, New York, Dennis earned his Culinary Arts & Restaurant Management degree from New York Restaurant School in Manhattan. He went on to open a catering business and became a teacher, educating students in culinary arts from grades 5 through college level. One distinctive moment in his career was being part of a culinary team led by Chef Jean-Georges Vongerichten that cooked for the 75th Anniversary of Time Magazine. Before East Ocean Bistro, Chef Collins was employed at Piper’s Landing Country Club, Martin Downs Country Club and Tesoro Country Club among other restaurants along the treasure coast. His passion is “to provide high quality food with excellent service at a fair price.

Francisco Ixcoy Ajaitaz

Francisco Ixcoy Ajataz was born in the town of Totonicapán Guatemala. His desire to become an American and live the so- called “American dream” burned deep inside him as a little boy growing up in a small poor farmers’ town. At the age of 20, Francisco migrated to the United States stopping in Texas for a while where he obtained his first restaurant job at Myiaki in Camino Real de los Tejas. He was a prep cook, but this first job was the catalyst to start his career which would end up being an executive chef at East Ocean Bistro. After 3 years in Texas, Francisco had become an American citizen, and decided to move to Florida. Upon moving to Florida, Francisco met a local executive chef in Stuart named Tracy Mcilain. Tracy was a well known and respected chef in town at the time, opening a brand new restaurant called East Ocean Bistro. After 3 years of Tracy’s tutelage, Francisco found himself in a dilemma. The bistro was sold to Dennis J. Collins a former chef from New York, and his partner. At that time, Francisco was a line cook at the Bistro, and was kept on along with the current sous chef, to ensure a smooth transition of the restaurant. A new executive chef Todd Rosson was added as well. The sous chef was fired shortly after, and Francisco left such a strong impression on the new ownership that he was promoted to sous chef shortly after. Francisco learned very much from executive chef Todd Rosson, and when Todd moved on in 2014, Francisco Ixcoy Ajataz quickly jumped on the opportunity to become executive chef. He is successfully holding this position today.