What is your idea of a perfect restaurant?
Where everyone knows your name. With a fireplace – but not for cooking, just for looking at, like a campfire so you don’t have to talk.
What is your greatest fear at work?
Which working Chef do you most admire?
What part of work ‘you’ do you most deplore in yourself?
I work too much. I don’t spend enough time with my family and friends, and my son.. mostly my son.
What would instantly make you fire someone?
When staff treat other staff like shit.
What was your most extravagant purchase for your restaurant?
My Basquiat prints.
What is your favourite food journey?
Going to NY with my son. It was so new with him – his eyes wide open.
What words or phrases do you most overuse at work?
I don’t think I overuse anything. I think I’m perfect.
What do you regret most after all your years in the business?
I turned down a job at Chez Panisse.
What do you love most about this industry?
Its hard to say, I’ve never really done anything else. I folded jeans once at Thrifty’s. I love what I do now.
What is your current state of mind?
Distracted. But I’m always like that.
If you could change anything about the restaurant industry where you are, what would it be?
It’s the city. I want the city to make it easier across the board to open a restaurant. So many restrictions, so many hurdles.
What do you consider your most essential ingredient?
The work/life balance struggle is real. How good of a juggler are you? Tips?
I’m not a good juggler. I work every single day. I was recently talking to my therapist about taking a day just for me. I did it and it was awesome.
What is your most treasured kitchen tool?
The lemon squeezy things. They’re yellow.
What do you regard as the lowest depth of misery?
When you finally retire, were will you live?
What is your most marked characteristic?
I’m a fantastic lover.
What is the quality you most like in a chef?
What is your greatest inspiration/motivation?
Simon. (Anthony’s son)
Superman or Spiderman?
What is the first thing you remember cooking?
Grilled cheese. The Kraft single grilled cheese, with challah and lots of butter.
Beck or Clapton?
You have to cook Escoffier’s death row meal. Menu?
Matzo ball soup, brisket, and lemon meringue pie.
Favourite kitchen word or phrase?
Don’t fuck it up.
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