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The Man with 100 Birthday Cakes

April 2015

I am so excited to share this newsletter with you. A celebration of spring, it highlights the inner workings of my company and what’s going on in my world this time of year. It’s an exciting time and in this issue you’ll read about how we’re celebrating spring – from making paella outside, to honoring the amazing vegetables that come into season, to just sharing our everyday thoughts and insights.

As a chef, I believe it’s important that we share what’s on our minds and inspire one another, not only with the rest of the world but especially with fellow food professionals, because we all share such an important role: feeding the world. Last month, I spoke at the International Association for Culinary Professionals, which to my luck, was held right here in Washington, DC. For me, it was a very special event because I was able to address so many of the talented individuals who make up the culinary industry. More importantly, I was able to take part in honoring my dear friend, Jacques Pepin, whose 80th birthday was celebrated at the conference. Such a man deserves as much tribute as he can get!

Jacques is considered the culinary master of French cuisine. Chef, author, father; he is someone I look up to very much. His work has earned him two of the highest honors from the French government, and he has won more James Beard Awards for his cooking and writing than I can count on one hand! The man is so amazing, some of the world’s most talented chefs came to this conference to give him over 100 specialized birthday cakes. And he knows how to have fun, too. At this past year’s Aspen Food & Wine Classic, he thought it was a good idea to pop a bottle of champagne right in the middle of a photograph and spray it all over the place. Some of the ladies were not too happy, ha! Spending time with him create the moments that money cannot buy, and I am happy to have him as a friend and a fellow chef, and most especially, an inspiration. Saludos, Jacques!


Photo Credit: Hugh Galdones