You won’t catch Tyler Kord of No. 7 elbowing his way through the greenmarket. He tells Food Republic — the online food publication backed by Marcus Samuelsson — that he is not impressed by chefs who glorify pristine local ingredients:
Everybody, every year is like “it’s springtime, it’s the fucking best time of year to be a chef” and, really, that bums me out. It’s all about grocery shopping, which I am not that into. Across the board I have always preferred the idea of buying inexpensive ingredients. I’ve always been more French than Italian, meaning rather than buying the nicest possible thing and putting it on a plate and serving it, I would rather buy the cheapest bullshit possible and manipulate it to a point that it transcends what it was. This is what a classic French restaurant does. When you’re in culinary school and turning artichokes to fry or braise, you don’t use the most beautiful artichokes. You use the bullshit ones.
So, what does he think of the almighty ramp? They’re OK, he says, but he doesn’t have time to hire a forager to seek them out. Besides, he points out, “if we are all using the same things, in the same ways, then what is the fucking point?” Breath of fresh air in a climate of hyper-seasonality and locavorism-as-religion? Or sheer blasphemy? Tell us your thoughts.
This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on April 14, 2011