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The Team

Tracy Malechek-Ezekiel (Chef/Co-Owner)

Tracy was born in Houston, Texas, and grew up just outside the city in Tomball, a suburb. Growing up, she spent her summers on her Granny and Papaw’s goat and sheep ranch in West Texas. After graduating from the University of Houston’s Hilton College of Hotel and Restaurant Management, she moved to Spain, where she fell in love with ingredient driven cooking.  

When she got back home, she packed up her car and drove to Chicago, where she spent a couple of years cooking at Lula Café, before heading off to the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, NY.  After she graduated, Tracy cooked in New York City at the award-winning restaurants Cru, Del Posto, and Blue Hill New York, before becoming a sous-chef at Danny Meyer’s Gramercy Tavern under James Beard Outstanding Chef winner, Mike Anthony. In 2015 she was tapped to be part of the opening team at Untitled at the Whitney. Tracy's food has been celebrated in Food and Wine Magazine, Esquire, Bon Appetit, Wine Enthusiast, and the New York Times. She is a 2024 James Beard Foundation Finalist for Best Chef-- Texas. 

Arjav Ezekiel (Beverage Director / Co-Owner)

Arjav was born in New Delhi, India, and he moved to Portland, Oregon (go Trail Blazers!) with his family when he was twelve. He grew up in a hospitality family-- and was always happiest in the kitchen cooking with his parents.

After graduating from Kenyon College, Arjav moved to Washington D.C., where he started his dining room career at The Source by Wolfgang Puck, before spending several years at Komi, a James Beard Award winner and Michelin starred restaurant. He moved to New York City in 2015 to help open Danny Meyer’s Untitled at the Whitney, where he met Tracy, before being promoted to the management team at the iconic Gramercy Tavern. Arjav's beverage program has been recognized by Food and Wine Magazine, Bon Appetit, Wine Enthusiast, Eater and Esquire. He was a nominee for Wine Enthusiast's Wine Star Awards and Esquire Magazine named him Sommelier of the Year in 2022. 

Heejae Galluccio (Executive Sous Chef)

Heejae was born in Korea and moved to Houston, Texas when she was sixteen years old. After high school, Heejae enrolled at the prestigious Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, NY where she was a standout student. After she graduated, Heejae cooked at some of the best restaurants in New York including Charlie Palmer’s flagship Aureole and Danny Meyer’s Gramercy Tavern. Heejae moved to Austin in 2020 to help lead the opening of a hotel restaurant before becoming a key member of the Birdie’s opening team. She was promoted to Executive Sous Chef in 2023. 

Sophie Stuart (Assistant General Manager)

Sophie grew up in Tulsa, Oklahoma and moved to Austin to study art at the University of Texas. After graduating, she spent several years working in galleries, museums, and eventually SXSW before a fateful wine tasting trip to the Texas Hill Country compelled her to switch careers.  Sophie has been a staple in Austin’s wine community since she jumped head first into hospitality and she has managed wine programs for several restaurants in the city. Sophie became Service Director at Birdie’s in 2022 before being promoted to Assistant General Manager in 2023