Thanks to Foodbuzz for letting me into SF Chefs 2010 and setting up an interview with Chef Kory Stewart of Americano restaurant.
I was able to walk around the SF Chefs tent before going to the demo and the interview and it was really awesome to see and taste the food and wine offered in the bay area.
The cooking demo with Chef Kory was great-it was about mozzarella and ricotta cheese. We tried the fresh mozzarella, served with bread and tomato; it was delicious. He also made fried squash blossoms that were stuffed with the ricotta and some Parmesan cheese. I had not tried squash blossom before (though I’ve seen them at the farmer’s market) and they were good, too.
It was my first interview that I had with a chef (in which I was the interviewer and not the interviewee) I wasn’t sure what to ask, but I think I did alright (I got some inspiration from Bon Appetit magazine)…
What is your fondest memory from being in the kitchen as a child?
Cooking with grandma, and eating tortillas with hot butter.
What advice could you give to aspiring chefs?
Stay focused; learn as much as you can with as many people as you can. Don’t under estimate who you can learn from.
As an aspiring pastry chef, I need to know, what is your favorite dessert?
Good question. Fruit Crisps.
What’s your comfort food?
What is your most memorable meal?
My best dining experience was at Manersa. The most special dining experience is with the best company.
Your favorite kitchen tool and why?
Mortar and pestle because it extracts flavor in a way no other tool can.
Of all of the places you’ve traveled, where’s the best food and why?
Thailand, they have the most flavorful, dynamic food.
What was the most unusual thing you’ve eaten?
Twinkies; they’re the modern miracle of science.
What is the best Italian dish that many people don’t know about?
That’s a tough question. (after much hesitation) It’s so mainstream. I would have to say Nduja, which is a spreadable salami; very spicy, from Sicily. It’s served by itself/on a crostini.
A special thanks to Liz Johannesen and Mike Ni and the rest of the Foodbuzz team and thanks to Chef Kory Stewart for an awesome interview!