Chef News

Part two: Chef and Tell with Kelly Liken of Restaurant Kelly Liken

This is part two of Juliet Wittman's Q&A with Kelly Liken, chef/owner of Restaurant Kelly Liken. To read part one of that interview, click here.

Kelly Liken Restaurant Kelly Liken 12 Vail Road, Vail 970-479-0175

Do you turn to food books or cookbooks? I read Barbara Kingsolver's Animal, Vegetable, Miracle a year and a half ago, and loved it so much that when I closed the book, I flipped it over and started over again. I read so many cookbooks, though I don't follow recipes unless I'm baking. I use them as inspiration. I really love reading about what other people are doing, trends in food, other cultures. I read a lot of ethnic cookbooks. I adore Mexican food because there really is a true regionality there. Cross a state line and the architecture is different, the food is different. And there are ribbons that tie it all together as one.

What's the culture of your kitchen? We're serious about the food that we're cooking, but I truly believe food does not taste as good when there's anger in the kitchen. It's a relatively patient kitchen. We have fun; we help each other out. (She laughs.) It's not like I've never gotten angry in the kitchen.

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Juliet Wittman is an investigative reporter and critic with a passion for theater, literature, social justice and food. She has reviewed theater for Westword for over a decade; for many years, she also reviewed memoirs for the Washington Post. She has won several journalism awards and published essays and short stories in literary magazines. Her novel, Stocker's Kitchen, can be obtained at select local bookstores and on Amazon.
Contact: Juliet Wittman