Chef Salad Highlights: The Funny, Astute and Provocative Comments Our Local Chefs Made in 2012

Bernie in front of sign 2.jpg
Bernie Kantak
Bernie Kantak, chef and co-owner of Citizen Public House

The great thing about being a chef is: I get to throw a party every night!

Name a local chef you admire and explain why: Josh Hebert. He's a genuinely good guy and to be honest, he saved me from a corporate life. He's probably not aware of it, but I was about to give up on opening a restaurant and I went into Posh for dinner with Tracy Dempsey. It was actually the first time I met Josh and I'm a little sad I can't remember what exactly he said to me, but truly, I went from being pretty much done with this business to wanting nothing more than to have a place and do it the way I wanted to do it with the people I believed in. So Josh, if you're reading this, thank you. I owe ya!

James Porter, chef-owner of Petite Maison

Do you watch Food Network?: Ab-so-lutely-effin-not. If you really want to know what it's like to work in a kitchen, watch Deadliest Catch. It's unscripted, passionate, and shows true determination through unforeseen difficulties. Working in a kitchen is more often like being at sea during a storm -- not in a studio with makeup artists.

What advice would you give an aspiring young chef?: Run like hell.

What do you understand about being a chef now that you didn't 10 years ago?: Failure isn't such a bad thing. A few battle wounds emotionally and physically may hurt, but they won't kill you.

What's a "foodie"?: It used to be a word that referred to someone who is passionate about food. But it has become an empty term that describes wanna-be experts with no hospitality experience who look down their noses and loudly judge what they themselves cannot do.

Describe Phoenix as a restaurant town: Kind of like an eighth-grader whose voice is starting to change, whose arms and legs are awkward and tend to flail a bit, but has a heart of gold and could grow up to be president someday.

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Location Info

Lo-Lo's Chicken & Waffles

2765 N. Scottsdale Rd, Scottsdale, AZ

Category: Restaurant

Hana Japanese Eatery

5524 N. 7th Ave., Phoenix, AZ

Category: Restaurant


4925 N. 40th St., Phoenix, AZ

Category: Restaurant

Christopher's Restaurant and Crush Lounge

2502 E. Camelback Road, Phoenix, AZ

Category: Restaurant

Petite Maison

7216 E. Shoeman Lane, Scottsdale, AZ

Category: Restaurant

Citizen Public House

7111 E. 5th Ave. Ste. E., Scottsdale, AZ

Category: Restaurant

Brat Haus

3622 N. Scottsdale Rd, Scottsdale, AZ

Category: Restaurant


3213 E. Camelback Road, Phoenix, AZ

Category: Restaurant

Binkley's Restaurant

6920 E. Cave Creek Road, Cave Creek, AZ

Category: Restaurant

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Victoria Corrigan
Victoria Corrigan

A great compendium; looking forward to part 2. And never thought most of my restaurant orders would end with "and please hold the truffle oil". Talk about overuse; it's starting to give HFCS a run for its money. (Hmmm... let's all meet at AJ's and slap GMO labels on every trufflated product we see...)

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