Jeff Virojanapa

Owner of White Orchids Thai Cuisine and Notch Modern Kitchen & Bar

Jeff Virojanapa is a restaurateur who owns two restaurants with his parents in the Allentown, Pennsylvania area: White Orchids Thai Cuisine and Notch Modern Kitchen & Bar. Born in Skokie, Illinois, Jeff moved to Allentown with his family when he was two years old. Growing up, he spent every Sunday with his parents at different eateries around town and worked at local restaurants throughout high school, which sparked his love for the hospitality industry. He then earned a degree in Optical Engineering from the University of Rochester and worked as an Engineer in Tennessee and California before returning home to Pennsylvania to fulfill his passion for restaurants. In 2007, Jeff and his parents, who were both born in Thailand, opened White Orchids Thai Cuisine located at The Promenade Shops in Saucon Valley. Off the bat, the restaurant was extremely successful — so much so that the property owners asked the Virojanapas to expand the space from 2,000 square feet to 4,000 square feet. Over the years, White Orchids has remained a favorite amongst locals, winning the award for Best Thai Restaurant in Lehigh Valley from Leigh Valley Style every year since its establishment. In 2019, Jeff and his parents decided to open a second restaurant, and Notch Modern Kitchen & Bar was born. After exploring Thai cuisine at White Orchids for over 12 years, the Virojanapas wanted to embrace a different fare while sticking to their roots, which inspired an American menu with Asian influences. When speaking about his restaurants, Jeff says: “To me, going to a restaurant is a time to enjoy company, celebrate life, discuss opportunities, and ultimately enjoy great food. We hope you can come to our restaurants and do many if not all of these things.” Jeff currently resides in Allentown with his wife Becky and their three children.

Jeff Virojanapa

Owner of White Orchids Thai Cuisine and Notch Modern Kitchen & Bar

Jeff Virojanapa is a restaurateur who owns two restaurants with his parents in the Allentown, Pennsylvania area: White Orchids Thai Cuisine and Notch Modern Kitchen & Bar. Born in Skokie, Illinois, Jeff moved to Allentown with his family when he was two years old. Growing up, he spent every Sunday with his parents at different eateries around town and worked at local restaurants throughout high school, which sparked his love for the hospitality industry. He then earned a degree in Optical Engineering from the University of Rochester and worked as an Engineer in Tennessee and California before returning home to Pennsylvania to fulfill his passion for restaurants. In 2007, Jeff and his parents, who were both born in Thailand, opened White Orchids Thai Cuisine located at The Promenade Shops in Saucon Valley. Off the bat, the restaurant was extremely successful — so much so that the property owners asked the Virojanapas to expand the space from 2,000 square feet to 4,000 square feet. Over the years, White Orchids has remained a favorite amongst locals, winning the award for Best Thai Restaurant in Lehigh Valley from Leigh Valley Style every year since its establishment. In 2019, Jeff and his parents decided to open a second restaurant, and Notch Modern Kitchen & Bar was born. After exploring Thai cuisine at White Orchids for over 12 years, the Virojanapas wanted to embrace a different fare while sticking to their roots, which inspired an American menu with Asian influences. When speaking about his restaurants, Jeff says: “To me, going to a restaurant is a time to enjoy company, celebrate life, discuss opportunities, and ultimately enjoy great food. We hope you can come to our restaurants and do many if not all of these things.” Jeff currently resides in Allentown with his wife Becky and their three children.

Tyler Baxter

Executive Chef of Notch Modern Kitchen & Bar

Raised in Coopersburg, PA, Tyler is a graduate of the Culinary program at Northampton Community College. He has invested his talent into the burgeoning Lehigh Valley restaurant scene with longevity at restaurants from fine dining to comfort food. Tyler has previously been the Head Chef at The Bayou, Grain, and Emeril’s Chophouse, and created the pop-up dinner concept Late Nite Bites along with his wife, Laura, and Sous Chef Sean Rainey. Tyler would love to be nominated for a James Beard award one day. His newest passion is his son Jack and growing roots with his family while still pursuing his goals as a chef, mentor, and co-worker.

Tyler Baxter

Executive Chef of Notch Modern Kitchen & Bar

Raised in Coopersburg, PA, Tyler is a graduate of the Culinary program at Northampton Community College. He has invested his talent into the burgeoning Lehigh Valley restaurant scene with longevity at restaurants from fine dining to comfort food. Tyler has previously been the Head Chef at The Bayou, Grain, and Emeril’s Chophouse, and created the pop-up dinner concept Late Nite Bites along with his wife, Laura, and Sous Chef Sean Rainey. Tyler would love to be nominated for a James Beard award one day. His newest passion is his son Jack and growing roots with his family while still pursuing his goals as a chef, mentor, and co-worker.

Byron Coons

General Manager of Notch Modern Kitchen & Bar and White Orchids Thai Cuisine

Raised in Lower Macungie, PA, Byron has been with the White Orchids family for the past 10 years, working as a bartender, bar manager, and current General Manager of both White Orchids and Notch Modern Kitchen & Bar. Prior, Byron attended school at USC and spent two years abroad in China. Byron has vast years of experience in the restaurant industry; even in his travels, he has found himself in the industry in some facet. Throughout his experience working with White Orchids, Byron has been leading development of the beverage program, along with company culture, branding, and operations. Outside of the restaurant industry, Byron is an avid fisher, golfer, and enjoys spending his free time outdoors.

Byron Coons

General Manager of Notch Modern Kitchen & Bar and White Orchids Thai Cuisine

Raised in Lower Macungie, PA, Byron has been with the White Orchids family for the past 10 years, working as a bartender, bar manager, and current General Manager of both White Orchids and Notch Modern Kitchen & Bar. Prior, Byron attended school at USC and spent two years abroad in China. Byron has vast years of experience in the restaurant industry; even in his travels, he has found himself in the industry in some facet. Throughout his experience working with White Orchids, Byron has been leading development of the beverage program, along with company culture, branding, and operations. Outside of the restaurant industry, Byron is an avid fisher, golfer, and enjoys spending his free time outdoors.

Jesse Pessolano

Manager of Notch Modern Kitchen & Bar

Jesse grew up in the Poconos and has spent his entire career in hospitality. Starting out at a popular ski resort in the Poconos before taking his talent to Mt. Airy Casino Resort. From there he ventured into the Lehigh Valley becoming a member of the Sands Casino. There he managed at both Emeril’s Chop House and Buddy V’s. After that Jesse was a part of Melt Grill in Center Valley continuing to grow and develop service. “I’m very excited to be a part of something new.  I believe our group has created a menu and atmosphere that brings a much needed flare to this area.

Jesse Pessolano

Manager of Notch Modern Kitchen & Bar

Jesse grew up in the Poconos and has spent his entire career in hospitality. Starting out at a popular ski resort in the Poconos before taking his talent to Mt. Airy Casino Resort. From there he ventured into the Lehigh Valley becoming a member of the Sands Casino. There he managed at both Emeril’s Chop House and Buddy V’s. After that Jesse was a part of Melt Grill in Center Valley continuing to grow and develop service. “I’m very excited to be a part of something new.  I believe our group has created a menu and atmosphere that brings a much needed flare to this area.

Joshua Coates

Beverage Manager of Notch Modern Kitchen & Bar

Joshua Coates is the Beverage Manager and an active bartender at Notch modern kitchen and bar. With 12 years dedicated to the hospitality industry he has spent a good deal of time in both the local and corporate sectors of the restaurant scene. Josh has returned to the Lehigh Valley from living in Denver, CO for a handful of years where he had a chance to train and work alongside some of the world’s best in mixology. Josh’s dedication to the craft of the cocktail permeates nearly every aspect of his life. When not found working behind the bar or spending time with his daughter, he can be found doing the occasional consulting job, gearing up for a new cocktail competition or designing new drinks for his Instagram page @a_few_drinks_behind. In 2016 he was a top finisher in Pernod Ricards BarSmarts advanced program. In 2018 Josh was granted Award T status from the Consejo Regulador del Tequila.

Joshua Coates

Beverage Manager of Notch Modern Kitchen & Bar

Joshua Coates is the Beverage Manager and an active bartender at Notch modern kitchen and bar. With 12 years dedicated to the hospitality industry he has spent a good deal of time in both the local and corporate sectors of the restaurant scene. Josh has returned to the Lehigh Valley from living in Denver, CO for a handful of years where he had a chance to train and work alongside some of the world’s best in mixology. Josh’s dedication to the craft of the cocktail permeates nearly every aspect of his life. When not found working behind the bar or spending time with his daughter, he can be found doing the occasional consulting job, gearing up for a new cocktail competition or designing new drinks for his Instagram page @a_few_drinks_behind. In 2016 he was a top finisher in Pernod Ricards BarSmarts advanced program. In 2018 Josh was granted Award T status from the Consejo Regulador del Tequila.

Sean Rainey

Executive Sous Chef of Notch Modern Kitchen & Bar

Sean has lived in the Valley for over 10 years now graduating from the Culinary program at Northampton Community College. He has worked at many of the top places in the area like Cosmopolitan, The Bayou, Grain, & Savory Grille. In Sean’s words, “I just really love to cook.”

Sean Rainey

Executive Sous Chef of Notch Modern Kitchen & Bar

Sean has lived in the Valley for over 10 years now graduating from the Culinary program at Northampton Community College. He has worked at many of the top places in the area like Cosmopolitan, The Bayou, Grain, & Savory Grille. In Sean’s words, “I just really love to cook.”

Daury Garcia

Sous Chef of Notch Modern Kitchen & Bar

As a child, Daury would watch his father cook meals both at home and at his restaurant in San Juan, Puerto Rico. He was eager to learn his father’s kitchen tips early on in life and always felt that these roots would eventually lead him to the culinary world. From his beginning at Zoila Restaurant to becoming a Sous Chef at White Orchids, his passion for food has never wavered. Pairing the right flavor profiles is very important to Daury. He loves to apply his knowledge of Spanish, Thai, and American cuisine to create intricate, unique dishes. Daury is looking forward to his time at Notch and cannot wait to help create this fusion of flavor.

Daury Garcia

Sous Chef of Notch Modern Kitchen & Bar

As a child, Daury would watch his father cook meals both at home and at his restaurant in San Juan, Puerto Rico. He was eager to learn his father’s kitchen tips early on in life and always felt that these roots would eventually lead him to the culinary world. From his beginning at Zoila Restaurant to becoming a Sous Chef at White Orchids, his passion for food has never wavered. Pairing the right flavor profiles is very important to Daury. He loves to apply his knowledge of Spanish, Thai, and American cuisine to create intricate, unique dishes. Daury is looking forward to his time at Notch and cannot wait to help create this fusion of flavor.

Eileen Casale

Assistant Manager of Notch Modern Kitchen & Bar
Eileen’s hospitality began in Lower Manhattan opening her own Italian restaurant, L’Orto with her husband, Carl. As a restaurateur, Eileen has directed special events and oversaw private dining. Her family then made the move to the Lehigh Valley where she joined Shula’s Steakhouse during their initial inception.  At Shula’s, she headed up private dining and floor management for 8 years.  Then, with their closing she joined the management team at Melt and Top Cut for 5 years.  Eileen is now thrilled for the next step in joining the Notch Modern Kitchen & Bar team.

Eileen Casale

Assistant Manager of Notch Modern Kitchen & Bar
Eileen’s hospitality began in Lower Manhattan opening her own Italian restaurant, L’Orto with her husband, Carl. As a restaurateur, Eileen has directed special events and oversaw private dining. Her family then made the move to the Lehigh Valley where she joined Shula’s Steakhouse during their initial inception.  At Shula’s, she headed up private dining and floor management for 8 years.  Then, with their closing she joined the management team at Melt and Top Cut for 5 years.  Eileen is now thrilled for the next step in joining the Notch Modern Kitchen & Bar team.

Greer Dalpe

Assistant Manager of Notch Modern Kitchen & Bar

Greer recognized her passion for the restaurant industry at an early age. After graduating from William Allen she obtained a degree in Food and Beverage Management from Johnson & Wales University and spent the first ten years of her career in New England and New Jersey managing upscale restaurants before moving back home to the Lehigh Valley. She first joined the opening team as manager at Cosmopolitan and, after the birth of her first son, worked as a manager for Grille 3501 and eventually lead the ZEST team in their first year as General Manager. Now that her boys are in school full time, she is beyond grateful for the opportunity to join the Notch team in this exciting new venture while still allowing time with family.

Greer Dalpe

Assistant Manager of Notch Modern Kitchen & Bar

Notch Modern Kitchen & Bar

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