David Leo Banks, CEC, AAC
Chef David Leo Banks, CEC, AAC, is Chef/Owner of Banks’ Seafood Kitchen and Raw Bar on the Wilmington Riverfront, a premier seafood restaurant and an iconic mainstay of the Wilmington restaurant scene. Opened in 2003 as Harry’s Seafood Grill, followed Harry’s Fish Market + Grill in 2009, this restaurant showcases the freshest seafood and raw bar through creative dishes and seasonal and regional harvests.
For nearly thirty years, Chef Banks acted as Corporate Executive Chef of Harry’s Hospitality Group, and was co-owner of Harry’s Seafood Grill, Harry’s Fish Market + Grill and Kid Shelleen’s Charcoal House & Saloon in Wilmington, DE. The restaurants have been a core of the Wilmington area and surrounding cities since 1988, which began with the opening and renovation of Harry’s Savoy Grill and expanded in 1998 to include the opulent Harry’s Savoy Ballroom.
In the spring of 2018, with great public excitement, Chef re-branded the restaurant to the eponymous Banks Seafood Kitchen and Raw Bar.
Well-known for creating and presenting innovative menus, Banks uses his diverse food background for the development of the menus and specialty events for which he is known. He was selected as the American Culinary Federation First State Chefs Association Chef of the Year in 1996 and 2001, and was inducted into the prestigious American Academy of Chefs in 2003 and serves as Northeast Regional Representative for the Academy. Chef Banks has received numerous accolades and awards both regionally and nationally and was most recently awarded the coveted Academy Chair’s Medal at the ACF National Convention in 2016 and two ACF National President’s Medals which hang in his display case. He served as chair of the Share Our Strength “Taste of the Nation” Benefit in Wilmington from 1994 through 2014, helping to raise over $1,000,000 in the fight against childhood hunger. He appears regularly on The Comcast Network’s “The Chef’s Kitchen,” and participates in culinary events, competitions and charity events around the country. Chef is highly respected for his dedication to developing and mentoring countless culinarians, tireless community service and a willingness to lend his expertise to many worthy causes.