Compliments of the Chef with Gayle Pirie

Compliments of the Chef with Gayle Pirie

This week, Chefs Feed met up with renowned chef Pirie at her restaurant in the Mission.

December 6, 2013
CF: You are notorious for your brunch, but what is something lesser known about you? 
GP: I can throw one hell of a staff party. 

CF: A few words your sous chef would use to describe you. 
GP: Passionate, driven, deeply involved. 

CF: What are you most excited about right now in your restaurant? 
GP: It would have to be the season of winter and what that brings. There's just treasures like Lacinato kale from Dirty Girl, savoy cabbage, and these gorgeous little white radishes. 

CF: Which chef would you drop everything to stage with? 
GP: Gabrielle Hamilton or Daniel Patterson.

CF: Insider tip from the kitchen for diners. 
GP: Trust your chef. If you show up at a restaurant and you're worried about something like Caesar dressing, let us know how you would like us to make it. I will not serve you a dry salad with sauce on the side. You're on vacation and you're on my aid, so tell us exactly how to make it and we will, but I will never serve sauce on the side. 

CF: Message to professional food critics. 
GP: Keeping the gauntlet going with an invigorated vision takes more work than creating new ideas. I think people might look at a restaurant, see a signature item, and think, "Oh, they haven't changed that in years." But we have and we change it every day, and keeping it on the menu as a satisfying and invigorating signature dish is difficult. The amount of effort to keep something on top is huge, and I don't think critics really know that. 

CF: Secret off-the-menu item that your guests can order tonight. 
GP: Our menu is written daily—that's our secret. Other than that we have no secrets. 

CF: One piece of advice for aspiring young chefs. 
GP: Taste, taste, and then taste it again. Tasting and knowing what is being put out is paramount. 

CF: What's for family meal tonight? 
GP: Sesame fried chicken, chicory salad, and Moroccan baby carrots.