Thursday, September 27, 2012

IS IT GOOD? when you grow up on burger king, you might not like foie gras

             I've just come out of the kitchen, slowing down for the evening, giving the reigns to my END ALL, NUMBER ONE, NUMERO UNO SOUS CHEF IN HISTORY. Mario Gonzalo Cuenca from Cuenca Ecuador, but we all called him Cuenca. Now I've spent my life working with Latino cooks, mostly Mexican, but a wide mix of nationalities. Each one proud and reverent about their culture. Ecuadorians absolutely have an advantage, they are taught English in school. Cuenca not only had great communication skills but amazing chops (kitchen skills) and the whole staff including myself, respected this guy like a demi-god. SO, ANYWAY (sorry ADD) I am perusing around the dining room asking my guests if everything is ok, and I see a new table sit down. It’s a party of 5 and they are well dressed and look like they might enjoy something other than a burger. So I make my way over to the table and say hello, and go into specific detail about one of my specials. I explain how I went to the fish market at 3 am and picked out the nicest fish in the entire seaport myself. then spent the afternoon at the farmers market to select by hand the beautiful vegetables that will accompany this glorious piece of fish, and yet another two hours making the perfect sauce and hand shaving the lemon peel and part of my knuckle for the candied lemon garnish. So after that whole shpeal about how much effort went into it and the care I took to make it perfect, and the sleep I missed to make sure you had an amazing dinner, you look at me with a crinkled up nose and say “is it good?”  
did someone drop you on your head?  
…there’s a reason my sous chef won’t let me bring knives into the dining room… 

thanks Cuenca!!

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