Dinner With a Dessert of Live Music

With a unique twist on both culinary and live performance, Paul Cullen of Lewes has entertaining his guests in mind from start to finish. 

A trained chef and a professional musician, Cullen uses both talents to satisfy palates and the listening experience. Even more, he does this all with a mission with his nonprofit foundation, Paul Kares which benefits local Delaware residents with educational outreach and donations to benefit the community – especially young people who want to achieve their dream in both the culinary and musical pursuits. 

In his kitchen, which doubles as a market that features genuine Italian specialties as well as his homemade variety of sausages, brunch guests are treated every Saturday and Sunday, from 10 am until 2 pm to an exquisite menu, followed by an intimate concert by local musicians or those he has networked with for years during his professional touring days. 

You’re in good company with Paul, even though he is a former bass guitarist for Bad Company. It’s an experience that he explains as a “whirlwind,” between the travel and lifestyle. He’s never hung up his guitar after leaving the band, however, but instead added to his repertoire by becoming a professional chef and sommelier.  

Beyond the brunches that feature a variety of musicians, Cullen also offers a unique catering gig: he will provide an in-home dining experience, cooking right there in your kitchen. Your guests (up to 12-14 people) are served, followed by his solo entertainment with his voice and guitar. Best part about that? The dishes even get done! From start to finish, it makes entertaining a breeze. 

A native of Fort Meyers, Florida, Cullen was inspired towards becoming a foodie in by his Italian/Irish grandmother, Elsie, who worked miracles in the kitchen. His musical career didn’t begin until he learned guitar at age 20. As far as meeting up with Bad company at the height of their boom, he quips, “Luck happens when reparation meets opportunity.” He now plays acoustic guitar (which for obvious reason works better during a home dining experience). 

He has recorded a solo CD and still works with other professional musicians (a list of his events and guest artists can be found here), forever promoting his concept that food and music are intertwined. 

Paul married his wife Bonnie, a hairdresser, 20 years ago – and he jokes that he also has a “work wife,” Nina, who works tirelessly alongside him at his restaurant and during catering events. When he moved to Lewes, he was part of a band called “Boys of Summer,” and his love of Delaware was sealed (although he travels and tours all over the place). 

And oh, if you’re interested in traveling with Paul, he offers that too. Upcoming tours he hosts include an eclectic mix of a tour of Tuscany or a sailing experience on a Tall Ship.  (In fact, he and his crew of Tuscan travelers are abroad as we write! Check out his Facebook to see all the great pics.)

Paul Cullen’s fascinating mix of philanthropy, cuisine, personalized concerts and travel are a difficult gig to beat, to say the least. Bon appetit! 

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