Joshua Johnson of Kai Dishes on Antelope Liver and Working for a Celebrity Chef

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Although he'd thoroughly researched job opportunities, all it took was one stage at Kai and that was it. "I'd never seen the product they were using -- all these beans and chiles -- and I knew this was another thing I needed to learn." He's been at Kai for six years now, admitting that there's a certain amount of pressure in maintaining the restaurant's stellar reputation. "You're making the playoffs every year and the year you don't, the coaches start disappearing." It's probably good to stay nervous, but we're guessing Johnson is on solid ground.

Five words to describe you: Loyal, hard-working, stubborn and honest.

Five words to describe Kai: Memorable, roots, family, unique and humble.

Favorite food smell: Garlic, cumin.

Most over-rated ingredient: Flowers. You cannot just throw a flower on a dish and call it "pretty."

Most under-rated ingredient: Black garlic. It's the noble rot of garlic. I love its flavor profile -- sweet with a hint of molasses.

Weirdest thing you ever ate: Antelope liver. In my family, we lived and survived off of what we hunted, and we didn't let anything go to waste. Whoever got the first kill had to make liver and onions for camp.

Location Info


5594 W. Wild Horse Pass Blvd., Chandler, AZ

Category: Restaurant

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