Jacques Qualin of J&G Steakhouse on Lori Hashimoto, Anthony Bourdain, and the Difference Between French and American Cooks
This is part two of my interview with Jacques Qualin, chef de cuisine at J&G Steakhouse at The Phoenician Resort. If you missed part one, where Qualin talked about head cheese, being an apprentice, and working for Daniel Boulud, read it here.
Buchanan Jacques Qualin with signature seafood at J&G
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Something always found in your kitchen: Fresh herbs.
Something never found in your kitchen: Okra.
Something always found in your fridge: Fresh ginger, beer, and nice white wine.
Buchanan Seared scallops, mixed spring peas, smoked butter, and lime syrup
Trend you like: Eating healthy.
Trend or buzzword you wish would go away: Molecular gastronomy.
What's your guilty pleasure?: Homemade chocolate.
Do you eat like an American now or like a Frenchman?: Being here for almost 20 years, you have to adapt.
Typical breakfast for you: Orange juice followed by a freshly juiced vegetable (preferably organic from the farmers market).
What do you miss most about France (food or restaurant-related)?: Some of the food, like cheese and cured meat.
What are the characteristics a good chef must have?: Being fair and being very focused on what's going out of his/her kitchen.
Explain one difference in style between Boulud and Vongerichten: Two different styles: Boulud has a traditional French Lyonnaise cooking background, which reflects in all his food; Jean-Georges has his solid French base but is experienced in the Asian influences and kept the best of it.