Thursday, October 23, 2008

6 Questions for a Chef: Brad Gates

It's been a challenging few years for Chef Brad Gates who I'm sure thought life would slow down for him a bit after nearly a decade at the top of the restaurant business in New York City. Today, the challenge is still there -- it's just different. With a young family, a wife in the restaurant business, and the ups-and-downs of the past year, everything might just be paying off. (One wonders if he must be thinking "Finally!") With Euphoria, the new incarnation of the top floor at Bugg's Temple, Gates is working with a solid team and hoping the new FOH staff, management support, and wine list will support the food we all know he can do. Euphoria opened for soft launch Tuesday.

Last week, in the midst of staff training, redecorating, and wine tasting, we sat down with Chef Brad Gates to ask our six questions for a chef.

1) What is your favorite restaurant or dish in town? Neal's hamachi carpaccio. There's nothing like it. The hamachi and sake in a box. I love what he's doing over there. It's not the way I cook, it's not my style, but I love to eat it.

2) What's the biggest problem with Indiana diners? Every city has its own set of ... well, even in New York, I think you just have to roll with people being diverse. But, the funniest thing I hear is "I'm a vegetarian but I eat chicken ... and fish." We get a lot of that here.

3) What's your favorite dish or ingredient that you can't put on your menu. I can put everything on the menu usually. I put on a lot of foie gras especially at certain times, but there are some things that I just don't think my customers would go for like botarga (dried, pressed tuna roe shaved over salad or pasta). I *love* it, but couldn't serve it. It would gross everyone out. I'm kind of a food geek and I get excited about new things that come along.

4) What's the dish you'd like to take off your menu but can't. I hate to say it but...the suckling pig! When I put the pig on the menu last fall, I thought I'd take it off after a few weeks. In fact, I *did* take it off and everyone said "Where's the pig?"

5) What's your post work routine? For the most part, I go home to my wife and kids. We have two kids, a 7-year-old, Sam and one in the terrible twos. We like to fix a nice cheese board, open a bottle of wine, and lay in bed and eat cheese and drink wine. With two people in the restaurant business (his wife is at the IMA) it's the best situation, and sometimes the worst.

6) Where are you most likely to be found when you're in not in the kitchen? At home with my wife and kids. I'm a homebody and an avid gardener. I'm obsessed with my yard. I have a lot of tomatoes and more basil than any one person could every use.

1 comment:

Kirsten said...

Thanks, Renee - I'm so glad to see this return! As a former vegetarian (strict-style) who has opened up to fish, I am completely on board with Chef Gates' complaint about confused "vegetarians". That botarga sounds awesome - I'd try it and bet that there are others who would too...