Chef and Tell, part two: Table 6 exec chef Scott Parker on girl-on-girl topless bacon cookery
This is part two of Lori Midson's interview with Table 6 exec chef Scott Parker. In case you missed it, part one of Parker's interview ran yesterday.
Favorite restaurant in America: I have two kids, so we haven't been out to eat in a long time, but there are places I like to go back to, like the Company of Cauldron in Nantucket. The chefs are badass, and the food -- everything -- is perfect.
Best food city in America: San Francisco. My wife, Deanna, surprised me with a trip to San Francisco after we'd started dating, and we ate at all these really great small joints with super-fresh food; the dishes were prepared with so much care. We had a kick-ass dinner at Chez Nous, where my wife and I just got to enjoy each other's company, plus we had this fried-honeycomb dessert that was dipped in chocolate that was just amazing.
Favorite music to cook by: Rush, Mr. Bungle, Alice in Chains, Richard Cheese, Queens of the Stone Age, Slayer and Willie Nelson.
Biggest kitchen disaster: The floods of September 15 and 17, 2010. The water main blew under the road on Corona and flooded our basement, so we had to close the restaurant that day. The road was patched and we had water, but water was still gurgling out of the blacktop in spots. The Denver Water people came back to fix the water main -- but then they broke the gas main. One of the workers came in and calmly asked if we had any open flames or electrical devices and, if so, to extinguish or shut them down immediately. We had to evacuate the entire kitchen, and the neighborhood shut down for a good five hours. We prepped on Wednesday and had to close Wednesday night, and then we prepped again on Friday and had to close again. Lame.
What's the best food- or kitchen-related gift you've been given? Cooking ideas from Deanna's mom, who grew up in Pennsylvania. She comes from a family of nine, so I get all these recipe ideas that I never would have thought of -- like saving bacon grease and making popcorn with it. These interesting combinations spark other ideas for me -- and ideas don't break or need repairs.
Favorite dish to cook at home: A pork roast rubbed with rosemary and garlic and served with potatoes.
Favorite dish on your menu: I love all my children equally, but my menu is never finished and always ongoing. I like everything equally and am disappointed equally because I want to keep fine-tuning my menu and getting better.
If you could put any dish on your menu, even though it might not sell, what would it be? Handmade buttered noodles of egg-yolk pasta with a little lemon, Parmesan, salt and pepper. That's it -- just a big-ass pound of freaking pasta in a bowl done as close to perfect as possible. Maybe I'm wrong; maybe it would sell.
One book that every chef should read: Roget's Food Thesaurus. It has almost every classical sauce listed, which is good to know, but if you want to learn everything about a subject, you should know the history of it, too. This book covers both.