Brothers Blair & Ethan Hensley, born and raised in Brooksville, FL, were no strangers to the world of cooking. Coming from a family full of cooks, they have been in the kitchen for as long as they can remember. Growing up, the brothers were fortunate enough to have their Granny Lewis live with them, who would regularly cook 3 meals a day the old fashioned way. With their mother Larie, known for her long-lasting restaurant Mallie Kylas, the boys both started working in the restaurant industry at a young age. It was only a matter of time before they ventured out on their own.
Ethan participated in the “Hernandough” Catering program in high school which influenced his passion early on. He later studied culinary at NECI and completed an internship in Nantucket, MA. Working in Nantucket at American Seasons, Ethan was largely influenced and mentored by Chef Mike Lascola. He has been invited several times to the prestigious James Beard House to express his culinary skills with Chef Mike. He continued work for his mom in the off season from Nantucket, but eventually decided to stay home to help with the family business and his pop for his final years.
Blair graduated from the University of West Alabama with a degree in Sports Medicine. During college, Blair had the opportunity to work for Ironman Triathlons traveling the country as the Logistics Coordinator. Later, he moved back home to help with the family businesses. It wasn’t long before he acquired his first Hotdog Stand, Coney Island Drive-Inn, where he put his heart and soul into bringing the Brooksville staple back to life. After 8 years, he sold Coney Island and bought an old restaurant near downtown Brooksville, Farmer John's. This finally allowed Blair and Ethan the opportunity to bring their dream restaurant to fruition and the “the upside-down boot” that Blair had drawn on a napkin years ago was brought to life. In 2012 they opened the doors to Florida Cracker Kitchen and it has been growing ever since.