Yesterday we spoke with What Happens When chef John Fraser about the challenges and rewards of creating a temporary and evolving restaurant. Today, with Valentine’s Day looming overhead, we change gears and talk about the things that really matter — like what Fraser would cook to impress a date.
The concept of a temporary restaurant feels very modern. What do you think the next trends in dining will be?
Typically, the way that people are engaged in restaurants is through criticism, like Yelp, which has a sort of “I like this, I don’t like” feel. I think there’s another way with more engagement and that comes through forming a community somehow through a restaurant.
What was the best Valentine’s Day you’ve ever had?
I’ve worked every one of them. I can’t even answer that question. I like the holiday because we get to serve a lot of people. We’re having a one-day special for What Happens When [with a four-course tasting menu for $92]. We’re going to get a bit cheesy and we’ll have a giveaway and we’ll use Kickstarter to engage people to us with love stories and poems.
What’s your favorite aphrodisiac?
What would you cook to impress a date?
Probably scallops with truffles. It’s the season for scallops and the season for truffles and it’s just a perfect match.
Chefs have notoriously busy schedules. How does one maintain a love life in the business?
I have no idea. I think you probably have to find a balance, but I don’t have it.