Title: Sous Chef, Luna Park restaurant
Hometown: New York, living in San Francisco for the last 15 years
1. What was your favorite food growing up?
Hamburgers, I ate them all the time! My mom was not a cook, so she didn't mind but my grandmother was an excellent cook. I remember looking forward to her cooking at holidays. That's where I get it from.
When I was six years old my babysitter would watch the Galloping Gourmet everyday at 3 o'clock, it came on right after Popeye. I remember seeing one episode and announcing to my mom I wanted to make apple pie. My mom insisted we use a pre-made crust and I was very upset with her, but the next time I made it from scratch.
2. What's the best thing about being a chef?
I love working with my hands and at the same time being able to use my brain. You get the left brain right brain combination, I like the creative stimulation. If I was doing just one or the other I'd go crazy.
3. What's your favorite item on the menu right now?
Probably the pork cutlet, it's one of our best-sellers too. It's a simple dish but it has some hidden surprises because we stuff it with mushrooms and cheese. It's such a homey taste, it makes you think "I wish my mother cooked like this!" It's as if you took grandma and sent her to culinary school.