When I was 15 years old and my parents told me I needed to get a job, I didn't know where I wanted to work, but my brother and sister had both chosen to work at the local grocery store, and I did at least know that that was NOT what I wanted to do.
One day after football practice, my mom took me around to find where I would want to go work. We stopped in a variety of places. One of which was Macaroni Grille, and they hired me to be a bus boy. I really enjoyed that job, and was making good money, especially for my age.
On one particular Saturday morning, I was rolling silverware, when the manager asked me if I knew how to cook. I felt that was an odd request, but he had asked because a number of our kitchen staff hadn’t shown up to work.
I answered him, that I had no idea if I knew how to cook. I mean, I’m the youngest of three children, and had long been cooking myself meals at home, like English Muffin pizzas, or a variety of other items….They decided to throw me on the line to cook through that lunch service and taught me on the fly.
From there I went to The Terrace, which was a high end French Restaurant on the 16th floor of a building here in Louisville, I was the youngest line cook that they had ever hired. I mainly did hot appetizers like escargot, and garlic shrimp.
I was then fortunate to become a kitchen manager at a really popular restaurant named Garrett’s, we were basically a chop house, great steaks, fresh seafood, etc.from there I went to an Italian restaurant called Martini Italian Bistro. I learned so much there, and met a lot of my lifetime friends that I am still very close to today.
By this time, my wife and I were getting married and planning on starting our family, so it was time for a change. I was fortunate enough to know some people that worked at Sysco, which is a food distributor, and they got me an interview. I got the job, and really this is where my culinary journey stepped up.
While at Sysco I got to work with some of the most talented chefs in the country, and really was able to broaden my horizons. I was even blessed to cook at The James Beard House with a local chef named Joshua Moore. He’s the executive chef and part owner of a local gem named Volare. That was one of the most difficult, humbling, and yet rewarding days of my entire life.
So there you have it, my journey through the culinary world. Some will question as what I am best at cooking, or what is my favorite to do…and that’s really hard to answer, but I feel that Sauté is my specialty. That doesn’t mean I don’t like to grill, or make soups and stews, but I can really let my heart shine with a pan in my hand. I belive you can really express yourself through food.