Most underrated ingredient: Salt. Using salt when preparing a dish brings depth and contrast, and salt is essential for the chemical reaction when baking.
Favorite spice: Old Bay has a million different applications, and it brings great flavor to any dish. You can use it very liberally and it still doesn't overpower your food.
Best recent food find: Natural and infused sea salts. We use a Hawaiian red sea salt in our gazpacho, and I love the bacon sea salt that we get from Italico.
One food you can't live without: Any type of pork product known to mankind. We did a catering event a few days back with St. Louis-style ribs that were tastebud orgasms. The bacon products we've got available are just incredible. There are so many different wood-smoked bacons that I love, and let's not overlook the many smoked and cured hams out there, too.
What's never in your kitchen? Bad attitudes, laziness, egos and your personal bad day. If you're having a lousy day, leave it at the door when you come into work, and if you can't leave it at the door, then talk to someone about it and we can help you find a solution.
What's always in your kitchen? Fully stocked herbs and spices. Our chefs have the ability to create with a lot of freedom, and if they need a specific spice, herb, wine or liquor, we'll get it for them. If you need black garlic or opal basil, it'll be in on the next order.
Favorite dish to cook at home: I don't cook much at home, but when I do, I'll batch-cook a big pan of lasagna or a crockpot of beef stew. Then I'll portion it and freeze it for future days of yumminess.
Favorite dish on your menu: We're all about the steak. Recently, we've been running a 22-ounce bone-in ribeye and a 24-ounce porterhouse. Believe it or not, a few weeks ago, a petite young lady was in with her family and downed every bit of that porterhouse.
Weirdest customer request: A few years ago, a gentleman came in and ordered the fourteen-ounce New York steak and requested that we trim the fat off of it and put in on a separate plate. That's not so unusual. But then he proceeded to eat the steak -- and then ate all the fat afterward. Now, that's weird.
Weirdest thing you've ever eaten: Many years ago, I had the pleasure of eating chocolate-covered crickets. If you didn't think about what you were eating, they were really quite good.