Top Ten—Bonnie Morales, Kachka, PORTLAND

Hot DAMN Bonnie Morales is cool. Let's all just quit now.

August 17, 2016 ● 1 min read

My mother loves Bonnie Morales. They've never met; but Morales's zucchini pancakes with creamy dill sauce (printed on a sauce-stained recipe page clipped from a recent Wall Street Journal) gets hauled out every few weeks. That's the kind of thing Morales, and by extension, her beloved restaurant Kachka in Portland, Oregon, does very well—food so heartfelt and straightforward it requires little to no fancy fluffing up. That zucchini is just a pancake, but it's probably one of the best you'll ever have, and now it's a part of your life. Simple. It's a private kind of joy that exists so rarely in a world of collectible dining moments. And wouldn't you know it, that's exactly the kind of stuff that occupies Morales's mind on the daily. —Cassandra Landry

1. Family

I have two beautiful boys (Noah is seven and Isaac is seven months) and an amazing husband/business partner/life partner. My parents and my brother (and his family) are in Portland too. Finding time to be together is a priority.

2. Team Kachka

I cannot believe we've made this little world and that we regularly employ about thirty people. They depend on me and I depend on them and the rewards are tremendous.

3. Brioche

Because butter + yeast = magic.

4. Sherry

Because oxidation + alcohol = magic.

5. Pedicures

When you work on your feet all day and your hands look like shit, at least you can take care of your feet.

6. Mid-century furniture  

Eero Saarinen is my jam.

7. Tomato vines

Get your nose up in a tomato plant. That is the best smell on the planet. Call me if you find a way to bottle that smell.

8. Soviet design

Man, there is something really energizing and moving about the postcards, posters, memorials, murals, etc. of the Soviet era. Propaganda is a hell of a drug.

9. Vita-prep blender

It's the one thing you can't fake in a home kitchen, by the way. I wish I could carry one with me everywhere.

10. Freshly-pulled mozzarella

I'm talking still warm and not quite set, squeaky yet rich. I can take down pounds of it. 

Illustration by Liz Noftle | Collage by ChefsFeed