Meet Chef Dusty Pettes from Ballygiblins



Gordon Ramsay has said that there is definitely a bond among kitchen staff. The staff of any restaurant spends more time in the kitchen than they do with their own families. Dusty Pettes has a wife and daughter, yet Ballygiblins in Carleton Place is mostly called home. The former “Undocumented Mayor of Prospect” began the hard way in the old Angus Barn on Highway 29. Within a month of beginning there as a cleaner, he moved up the culinary ladder prepping, and then progressed to Prime Rib and Steakhouse selections. Similar to how Chef Anthony Bourdain trains his chefs, Dusty worked his way up in the ‘streets” of the ktichen.

A chef is a mixture maybe of artistry and craft. You have to learn the craft really to get there. Dusty gained experience at local eating establishments like Leatherworks, and finally met Derek Levesque at the old Mississippi Hotel. From there, it was on to Ballygiblin’s where he never looked back. Bally’s is one of our local gems serving excellent food, sourced locally.

You don’t become a chef to become famous, and Dusty is all about using local produce and meats. Everything is made by scratch like it used to be. You won’t find them opening up a bag of frozen french fries at Ballygibin’s. Sure, it costs a bit more, but they support local farmers and butchers like Anderson Farms. They are known for their burgers, and the ground meat they buy locally is so good very little filler is needed. Their popular homestyle burger has seasonings, salt and pepper, and that’s all she wrote. No matter what it is, Dusty loves to push the boundaries of flavour. A home cooked meal, but with a different approach.

As a chef, you need to respect your guests and their needs. Dusty understands that, and they do a variation of food on the menu. From comfort food with a twist, to world foods, there is something for everyone. Some daily specials are featured as a testing ground to get feedback. It’s all about the customer! Dan, the baking chef’s desserts are so good he could be called “someone’s mom”. Cheese cakes are his specialties, and there is word a Tiramsu is in the works!

His work beliefs as a chef are carried on at home with his daughter being taught how to raise chickens, and his wife Jessica involved with our beloved community Beckwitch. (more about her this week) Fresh eggs, and expanding gardens, are all in the Pettes family mantra.

Dusty loves the small town feel of Carleton Place, but wishes there was more life in the downtown area. It would also be a prefect world if landlords showed some love–but then again, it is easy to say bring them in, but you can’t force anyone.

What final words did Chef Dusty Pettes have?

“You are only as good as your last plate!”


151 Bridge St, Carleton Place, ON K7C 2V6
(613) 253-7400

Pig Candy — Cooking With Chef Dr. Dusty from Ballygiblin’s

Carleton Place- The Happiest Damn Town in Lanark County

For the Facebook Group:

Tilting the Kilt, Vintage Whispers from Carleton Place by Linda Seccaspina is available at Wisteria at 62 Bridge Street, the Carleton Place Beckwith Museum in Carleton Place, Ontario and The Mississippi Valley Textile Mill in Almonte.  available on all Amazon sites (Canada, US, Europe) and Barnes and Noble

About lindaseccaspina

Before she laid her fingers to a keyboard, Linda was a fashion designer, and then owned the eclectic store Flash Cadilac and Savannah Devilles in Ottawa on Rideau Street from 1976-1996. She also did clothing for various media and worked on “You Can’t do that on Television”. After writing for years about things that she cared about or pissed her off on American media she finally found her calling. She is a weekly columnist for the Sherbrooke Record and documents history every single day and has over 6500 blogs about Lanark County and Ottawa and an enormous weekly readership. Linda has published six books and is in her 4th year as a town councillor for Carleton Place. She believes in community and promoting business owners because she believes she can, so she does.

4 responses »

  1. I love that I can go to Ballygiblins and know that they fully understand Celiac….and can guide me to the best choices for my restrictions….and it tastes awesome….every time!


  2. I LOVE hot wings! I went a long while back and ordered some hot wings. At first I was given the standard “hot” sauce, but after a back and forth or two Dusty brewed me up some homemade Scorpion pepper sauce that was AWESOME! Flavorful and super spicy. Never before have I found a chef that kept those peppers just in case. Such a rare thing to find in a small town.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s