This is part one of Lori Midson's interview with Eric Skokan, exec chef/owner of Black Cat in Boulder. Part two of that interview will run in this space tomorrow.
In the exhibition kitchen, the Black Cat crew is breaking down ducks in a comfortable silence. There is no music, no pandemonium and very little chatter -- just the familiar thuds and jangles of knives and an occasional grunt: kitchenspeak for affirmation. Eric Skokan, Black Cat's owner and exec chef, is squatting at the bar, a glass of red wine, untouched, sitting on the counter, when the front door swings open and a man marches in and hands him a monumental wad of cash. It's been a profitable morning at the Boulder farmers' market, where Skokan has a stall and hustles organic produce from his farm in Niwot.