In line with the new additions and upgrades in the kitchen, the Coosa Cleaver is also welcoming new executive chef Amber Bonds to the team.

Ryan Friday, who owns the business with his wife Danyalle, said Bonds is tasked with introducing new recipe ideas, revamping the menu as needed, enhancing customer experience, acting as the restaurant's brand ambassador and ensuring that the kitchen functions efficiently and effectively.

"She will assume the leadership role in the kitchen," Friday said. "Outside of the kitchen, she'll be working events and getting out into the community to help us increase our footprint locally as well as in the River Region in general."

Friday said he noticed Bonds' talent a while ago and has been trying to hire her to work at the restaurant for a long time.

"I would see her out and about in the community while working events with her previous employer and her professionalism and the way she carried herself really stood out to me," Friday said. "She has earned respect in the local food and culinary industry. There have already been three or four people in the food industry who have congratulated us on a great hire."

As Bonds gets adjusted in her new role, she said her goals include providing a more upscale experience with a southern twist and helping the restaurant distinguish itself from others.

"The restaurant and Wetumpka in general has already been getting more exposure because of HGTV, but I really want to put us on the map with a new signature dish or by doing something that no one else is doing. We have to find the thing that sets us apart. I'm so excited for what's to come."

Bonds is a graduate of Stanhope Elmore High School and received an Associate of Applied Science degree in culinary arts from Trenholm State Community College.

She has more that 15 years of experience in the food industry with eight of those years in management positions. She sits on the alumni board for Trenholm's culinary arts program and is a member of a food industry association based in Montgomery.