It’s not often in life that you get to meet a world famous chef who happens to have 2 Michelin Stars. Luckily, the kind people at Budweiser allowed me the chance to interview said world famous chef. Who is that chef you ask? Oh just Chef David Chang.
You may know Chef David Chang from his world famous restaurant which has since spawned several other restaurants across New York City and around the world. Chef David Chang has pretty much won every distinction any chef could dream, all before the age of 40. To say the man is impressive, is an understatement.
I recently was able to sit down with him at Budweiser sponsored event, the Bud & Burgers event, which is a winner take all burger face-off from cooks all over the U.S.
The Unmanly Chef: You have a diverse background from training to be competitive golfer as a kid to teaching English to kids in Japan, what drew you to become a chef?
Chef David Chang: I didn’t have to sit by a desk! You get to work with interesting people and you get to follow the process of a raw ingredient and take it to something hopefully delicious.
The Unmanly Chef: How did being in Japan influence what you’re doing now? It’s been said that you really enjoyed observing how Japanese noodles are made.
Chef David Chang: The thing about Japan is, most people assume that it’s an expensive place to live. I didn’t think that I would be able to eat that well,but what was surprising to me was that even though things were so expensive you can still eat very well. You can eat very well affordably, and good food wasn’t just for rich people and that’s what sort of changed my concept of what eating was.
The Unmanly Chef: When you go home, what are you making for yourself?
Chef David Chang: If I do cook at home, it’s going to be something simple like a soup or stew or honestly burgers. It can’t get more difficult than that, you just need really good ingredients. And I’m going to want to pair it with something simple like a Budweiser. Simple food that’s delicious. Simple doesn’t mean it can’t be complex.
The Unmanly Chef: What makes a perfect burger for you?
Chef David Chang: I just want something that’s delicious. It’s an ephemeral thing, it’s a moving target that you’re never gonna hit. So it can be something really simple or very complex. As long as it has that woah moment, that’s all that matters. I had a burger recently…and somebody put Mexican ingredients on it, and I was like woah. But the reality is, there was a nice balance of acidity and high heat. It’s a blank canvas.
The Unmanly Chef: What’s your take on the high end world coming to the less sophisticated dishes?
Chef David Chang: I think that in this day and age with the internet and social media people know more about food than ever before. And not just that they care. If you look at it, whether I’m correct or not, it seems to me more younger people are spending more money on food than anything else. And with that, maybe eating well doesn’t have to be for just an elite set. As a chef you want to feed anybody. It doesn’t have to be a certain clientele. I think that food becomes more accessible, it’s just natural that chefs want to make food that’s accessible to everybody.