Round two with chef Mark Fischer: "Embrace humility"
330 7th Street, Glenwood Springs; 970-230-9234
Part one of my interview with Mark Fischer, exec chef-owner of Phat Thai, The Pullman and Six89, ran yesterday; this is part two of our chat.
Most memorable meal you've ever had: It's more a function of context: more "who with" and "when" than "where," but the ramen at Aji-no Sanpei on "Ramen Alley" in Sapporo stands out. There's no ramen on our menu, because the memory of that simple dish still haunts me. I could never come close to duplicating it.
Favorite restaurant in America: Pok Pok, in Portland. It's an inauspicious start: White guy cooks legitimate Thai food; huge implications and influence; a commitment to keeping it authentic; his unwillingness to compromise.
Favorite cheap eat in Denver/Boulder: The Cherry Cricket. It's like an oasis of provincial reason...with damn good burgers.
If you only had 24 hours in Denver/Boulder, where would you eat? Pablo's for coffee in the morning, because it's unassuming and has the baddest baristas in the city; Bones for lunch because of its elegant simplicity; and Oak at Fourteenth in Boulder for dinner, because they truly get it.
Favorite childhood food memory: My mother's cooking was marginally acceptable, but her chocolate chip cookies were the shit.
Favorite junk food: Root-beer milk. But it's milk, so is it really junk food?
Favorite dish on your menu: That's like asking me to pick my favorite child. It'd manifest itself in years of therapy.
Biggest menu bomb: Fish-head curry. Admittedly, the name can be off-putting, but people can be so closed-minded.
Rules of conduct in your kitchen: Have your shit together; actions speak louder than words; don't take yourself too seriously; respect each other, the product, your purveyors, your guests and your community.