Why “Culinary Bad Ass”?
In my endeavors in writing restaurant reviews, top 10 lists, and conducting podcast interviews with chefs for St. Petersburg Foodies, I have developed a great amount of respect for professional restaurant chefs. They’re like the Navy Seals of cooks.
Even though I have taken numerous classes and courses on many types of cuisine, ingredients, prep, and cooking methods, I do not have a degree from a culinary school, and I have never worked in a restaurant while it was open for business. (I did get to help with prep in a restaurant kitchen before they opened for the evening.) I have not run a professional kitchen or managed a kitchen staff.
For these reasons, I hesitate to put the title of Chef in front of my name, even though some people call me that. However, another way to think of a chef is as a culinary bad ass. That’s my synonym for chef.
With that name, I’m probably not going to get invited to any elementary schools to speak about cooking, but I guess I’ll have to live with that.
Even though I’ve been cooking all of my life–literally since I was a kid–I did a hardcore, deep dive into all things culinary, up-at-dawn, all day, every day for the last 3 years. I’ve enrolled in online culinary courses and lessons with The Culinary Institute of America, Milk Street Cooking School, and Rouxbe Culinary School. I’ve watched nearly every cooking show, and competition, read every food magazine, and have become a certified food judge for barbecue, steak, chili, and pizza amongst others. I’ve judged at The World Food Championships, The World Chili Championships, The World Steak Championships, and pizza and BBQ cook-offs around the country.
My Food Judging Certifications:
World Food Championships Certified Food Judge #1541
Certified Chili Judge #62 by the International Chili Society
Certified Steak Judge #1562 by the Steak Cookoff Association
Certified Pizza Judge #14 by the Pizza Cookoff Association
Kansas City Barbeque Society Certified BBQ Judge #112881