Part two of my two-part Salazar story. Part one can be found here.
I don’t know how the start of a new job goes for you, but you know you've arrived when your boss calls you a pussy.Read More
Part one of a two-part story of my time at Salazar.
In my mind, Chef Jose Salazar looked like a human being, talked like a human being, laughed and conversed like a human being, but Chef Jose Salazar was not a human being. He was a machine. Having worked for Jean-Georges and Thomas Fucking Keller, having transformed a four-star hotel's restaurant into a dining mecca, and now was opening his own place to great local anticipation, I was convinced that he was, in fact, a decepticon. His Food & Wine nominations for Best New Chef in both 2011 and 2012 weren't proof that he was human; it just meant he had successfully fooled newspapers and editors alike into thinking he was human, due to his advanced programming. That’s it. There was no other possible explanation. This man-mimicking imposter had to have been built in South America, assimilated himself into human culture in New York City, and took a woman and small child hostage and called them his family and moved to Cincinnati. Any contact would mean my doom. For me to call and speak words to him would be to put my name on this space-borg’s death list, and razor-wire tentacles would travel through the phone’s earpiece and tear my skull apart from the inside.
I was only slightly off.Read More
As the few I am privileged to call friends may know, the last few weeks for me have been... trying. My day job workload was suddenly halved, a frightening feeling that proved to be temporary as my project list then tripled over the next three days. I recently started an internship-turned-part-time gig at a restaurant under an extremely talented but exacting local chef (I'm glossing over this story for now). It's an exciting and rewarding privilege but nonetheless challenging, demanding of as much mental and physical penance as I can afford. It takes up my Saturdays, which cuts the weekend I am accustomed to in half. I don't mind busy schedules; I'm used to them and can handle the lack of sleep, even if it does put me in a social funk. Anna is also an insane person in her own way; right now her successful photography business is kicking her ass, and she is kicking right back. I couldn't be more proud of her. Of course, this cuckoo schedule does mean we basically never see one another. Our relationship is thankfully stronger than ever, and we know how to recognize any warning signs of stress; when our tanks are a little too exasperated, we fill them with a date night here and a "sick" day there to keep the machine of marriage running. It can be tough, but everything's moving forward. Everything is going ok.
Then I get the call from my dad.Read More
There's not much to say about this bread. I wanted a better BLT and a better hamburger. That's it. No anecdotal small-question deep-answer bullshit on flexibility or struggle. It's just really, really good bread. I've tried many recipes and this is my favorite, a straightforward cold-rise brioche lifted from Bouchon Bakery. It has a slight tang from the slow fermentation and is loaded with flavor from the rich ingredients. Light, airy and yielding easily to the tooth, it still has enough integrity to withstand the generously meaty forces oft present in my kitchen. As always, pay attention to the details.Read More