Round two with Dana Rodriguez, exec chef of Bistro Vendome
This is part two of my interview with Dana Rodriguez, exec chef of Bistro Vendôme. Part one of that interview ran in this space yesterday.
Favorite restaurant in America: Gramercy Tavern in New York. It's a wonderful place with delicious, flavorful food, nice ambience and perfect service. We had the best suckling pig in the world when we ate there.
Favorite Denver/Boulder restaurant(s) other than your own: I love Frasca in Boulder. The food is great, the menu is really creative, and the owners are really nice, hardworking and very smart businesspeople. I also really like Sushi Sasa in Denver. It's my favorite place for the freshest and best sushi, and we go every Monday. We also love Jesus, one of the sushi chefs. He -- and everyone else -- provides the best customer service. And I can't get enough of Lao Wang Noodle House. They have the best pot stickers in town. Perio
Last restaurant you visited: Cafe Options. It was a pop-up dinner benefiting Work Options for Women -- a great charity -- that was all cooked by Max MacKissock and the staff from the Squeaky Bean. I miss the Squeaky Bean!
What you'd like to see more of in Denver/Boulder from a culinary standpoint: Farmers' markets would definitely be one on my list, along with old-school techniques that highlight ingredients. And as a mother of three, I'd like to see more affordable, healthy and delicious places to eat with your family.
What you'd like to see less of in Denver/Boulder from a culinary standpoint: Less fucking with flavors in food. I mean, what's up with lobster ice cream? I don't want any lobster in my ice cream. Highlight flavors and keep them pure. When you put too many things in one dish, all it does is cause confusion.
Which chef in Denver/Boulder do you most respect? Chef Jen. She's the best teacher ever, and she takes the personal time to teach you every single thing -- and that really makes a difference.
If you could cook in another chef's kitchen, whose would it be? Thomas Keller's French Laundry. It's a restaurant that's inspired me to create delicious food, and I love Keller's philosophy.
Rules of conduct in your kitchen: You have to do it right and be proud of it, or don't do it at all. Make it right or make it twice, bitches! One of my most important rules is to be respectful of everything: the product, each other, the restaurant -- everything. But you also need to have fun at the same time, and enjoy what you do.