Firefly, Panama City Beach’s premier fine dining restaurant and sushi bar, has introduced Derek Langford as its new executive chef. Langford is a graduate of Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts in Atlanta. His previous professional experience includes WaterColor Inn in Santa Rosa Beach, Florida; Bud & Alley’s in Seaside, Florida; Farm 255 in Athens, Georgia; and Chateau Elan Winery and Resort in Braselton, Georgia.
“I’m very proud and excited to be a part of the Firefly team,” said Langford. “They have set the bar at the highest level and I plan not only to keep it there, but also do my best to raise it! I walked into an amazing staff full of all-stars, and people aren’t usually that fortunate when taking over.”
Langford wants his guests to experience unique combinations of flavors, textures and visual awe using only the freshest sustainable ingredients. “Developing relationships with local fishermen, farmers and ranchers to ensure quality is key,” Langford said. He prides himself on creating dishes from scratch to ensure freshness and flavor.
Firefly owner Dave Trepanier is excited about the change, but also noted not to expect major changes in the Firefly menu. “We definitely are going to stick with what got us here, and the staple Firefly dishes aren’t going anywhere!” Trepanier said. Langford’s addition to an already talented team has Trepanier looking forward to the future. “I never want to get stagnant or complacent,” he continued. “I want the guests who eat with us once a week to have the same excitement as the ones who are dining with us for the first time.”