HOMETOWN: Fort Lauderdale, FL currently resides in New York City
PROFESSION: Sous Chef in NYC
CULINARY EDUCATION: A.S. Culinary Arts, Johnson & Wales, North Miami
FAVORITE SIMPLE SUMMER RECIPE: Diced strawberries, mango, tomato, cucumber, and jicama. Thai dressing (sugar, lime juice, fish sauce and siracha). Thai basil and mint chiffonade.
For the past two years, Andrew has studied everything from the French cuisine of Raymond Blanc to the molecular gastronomy of Ferran Adria. With food influences that range from African, Spanish, French and Thai to Vietnamese, Japanese, Latino and Indian, Andrew prides himself on being diverse in the kitchen. When Andrew isn't working, you can find him researching cuisines at a bookstore or shopping for spices that are uncommon and of multicultural influences to adapt to his cuisine. He believes in translating the flavors and techniques from different cultures into innovative interpretations that do not stray far from their origins. His goal is to leave a legacy like the chefs before his time, which shaped him and his fellow chefs minds and refined their techniques. He says he doesn't make food for mere sustenance, but to create an experience that impacts the soul.
HOMETOWN: Los Angeles, CA
PROFESSION: Executive Chef, Foxtail, SBE Restaurant Group
CULINARY EDUCATION: French Culinary Institute
FAVORITE SIMPLE SPRING RECIPE: Baby beets with bouchon goat cheese and marcona almonds
Antonia worked for executive chef Lee Hefter at Spago restaurant for six years and is now Executive Chef at the popular L.A. restaurant Foxtail. A single mother living in Los Angeles with her 7-year-old daughter, Antonia comes from an Italian background and says fresh linguine with white truffle is her favorite thing to cook. She always has aged balsamic and extra virgin olive oil on hand, and root beer floats with her daughter are her favorite indulgence.
HOMETOWN: Los Banos, CA currently resides in San Francisco, CA
PROFESSION: Chef, Myth Cafe
CULINARY EDUCATION: Associate of Arts, California Culinary Academy
FAVORITE SIMPLE SPRING RECIPE: Chilled spring pea soup with Strauss yogurt and dill cucumbers
Ryan zeroed in on his desire to be a chef at the early age of nine when the toys at the top of his Christmas list included kitchen utensils, a wok and food dehydrator. Growing up in the Central Valley of California he developed a passion for the culinary arts that has led to a very successful career spanning both coasts. His talent for creating simple, healthy and delicious Mediterranean and French-influenced cuisine draws long lines and wide acclaim at Myth Cafe in San Francisco, where he has been chef since 2005. Ryan strongly believes in giving back as much as possible and works extensively with Bay Area community organizations. This fall, he led a team of over 30 volunteers in his first Thanksgiving Bag Lunch Giveaway, which involved creating 1,000 bag lunches from scratch for people in need.
HOME TOWN: Chicago, IL
PROFESSION: Sous Chef at Buddakan
CULINARY EDUCATION: Culinary Institute Of America
FAVORITE SIMPLE SPRING RECIPE: Grilled matsutake mushrooms, shaved myoga, spicy truffled ponzu
Dale, a sous chef at Buddakan, one of New York's hottest restaurants, was born and raised in Chicago, where he helped open the renowned restaurant Jean Georges Vong. In Chicago, Dale worked with distinguished chefs like Carrie Nahabedian and Shawn Mcclain. With his Filipino background, Dale focuses on Asian flavors. I love the balance that Asian cuisine offers the salty, sweet, bitter and sour and the textures it provides for different experiences in every bite. One of Dale's kitchen favorites is a dry aged kobe rib eye. Dale says cooking meats is one of his favorite things to do in the kitchen and the technique that goes into properly searing and basting a rack of lamb or steak shows a lot of love. A motto that drives Dale is expect perfection, because if you fall short your left with greatness.
HOMETOWN: Chappaqua, N.Y. currently resides in San Francisco, CA
PROFESSION: Executive Chef at Circa Restaurant
CULINARY EDUCATION: Self-Taught
FAVORITE SPRING RECIPE: Spring lamb with fresh spring garlic
A third generation chef, Erik gets his love of cooking from his grandfather and mother, who are both chefs. He worked his way through the ranks of several New York City restaurants before becoming sous chef at Eros and then Tapas Lounge. He eventually tired of the cold and decided to move to California, where he now works as executive chef at Circa Restaurant in San Francisco. He says his favorite thing to cook is Circa's popular pan-seared Chilean Sea Bass with wild chanterelle, truffles and caramelized leek ragout.