With my passion and experience with food, I talk to people about their origin stories. What they ate growing up, their culture, favorite foods, recipes, family traditions, awesome tools, best & worst restaurant experiences in the world and of course; their current projects, advice & businesses. Food connects us all, so let’s learn more about it together.
EPISODE 0038 Elizabeth Binder - Hand-Crafted Catering
Chef Elizabeth Binder was born and raised in South Africa, inspired by her fisherman father and great entertaining grandmothers, she attended the internationally recognized Christina Martin School of Food and Wine in her hometown of Durban.
After graduating, she landed her first cooking job at the small luxury hotel, Blue Mountain Lodge near the Kruger Park, where she was quickly promoted to head chef at the tender age of nineteen. At Blue Mountain, her reputation rose as she cooked state dinners for both F.W. de Klerk and Nelson Mandela at a pivotal point in South African history.
In 1995, Elizabeth packed her bags to embark on a career that would take her around the world. Her first stop was the UK where she worked for Sir Terrence Conran’s, Del Ponte and at Clarke’s, owned by Alice Waters’ mentee Sally Clarke. Subsequent travels took her around the globe – from the French Alps to Sydney, Australia – further deepening her knowledge of cuisine and international kitchens.
While in Sydney, Australia she spent time in the kitchens of Niel Perry’s, Rockpool and Dietmar Sawyer’s, Forty One Restaurant before taking over as executive chef of Plissee, a popular restaurant / cafe in the rag trade district of Surry Hills.
Seeking her next culinary adventure, she headed to the United States where she fell in love with San Francisco. Her work in San Francisco has seen her be part of the Traci Des Jardins talented team at Jardiniere. Working along side and under other incredible chefs like, Douglas Keane (Cyrus Restaurant), Richard Reddington (Redd), Tamalpais Roth-MacCormick (Bunches & Bunches LTD) and Loretta Kellar (Bizou / Coco 500), with stagiaire stints at both The French Laundry and Chez Panisse.
In 2006, after the birth of her first child, Elizabeth met business partner, Christopher Losa. The two worked hand-in-hand to open the Italian-inspired Bar Bambino, which in six short years became one of the most recognized and awarded restaurants in San Francisco’s Mission District. At Bar Bambino, she was able to realize her concept of rustically elegant cuisine and combine finesse with respect for local, fresh, and extraordinary ingredients.
Elizabeth is currently the Chef / Owner of successful Hand-Crafted Catering, a boutique food and wine pairing event company, based in the Napa Valley. Television appearances include competing on Top Chef: Seattle, the tenth season of the Emmy and James Beard Award-winning series and beating Bobby Flay on the Food Networks: Beat Bobby Flay.
Hand Crafted Catering by Elizabeth Binder
Great conversation on location in Napa,CA regarding Elizabeth’s amazing journey with food! Thank you to previous podcast guest (Episode #14) Ben Robert butcher/owner of Gambrel Co. for connecting us.
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EPISODE 0037 Rhasaan Fernandez - Boffo Cart
Rhasaan Fernandez is the owner of Boffo Cart and Sam’s Log Cabin. Rhasaan was born and raised in San Francisco of Puerto Rican and Caucasian descent.
Growing up in the 90s, Rhasaan was exposed to all the diverse cuisine in San Francisco. Rhasaan worked his way through the hospitality industry from California to Colorado and back. Rhasaan decided to start cooking his own style of food for everyone and began Boffo Cart. Circumstances also allowed him to become apart of an old roadhouse/speakeasy Sam’s Log Cabin in Albany, CA which serves breakfast and home style Americana & Mexican cuisine.
Boffo Cart started out as Rhasaan creating his own food for the streets and then progressed into catering and pop-ups. Boffo Cart can be found these days at several different farmer’s markets throughout the Bay Area in Northern California known for always having fresh and organic delicious food.
Rhasaan and I talked on the podcast about growing up in the Mission District in San Francisco, weird foods, seasonal produce, education through the hospitality industry, supporting local farmers and creating great food for the community.
Appreciate Rhasaan for his time and support. We recorded this podcast on location inside his prep kitchen in Berkeley, California.
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EPISODE 0036 - Justin Gill - Bachan's Japanese BBQ Sauce
Justin Gill is the founder and CEO of Bachan’s Japanese BBQ Sauce. Justin was born and raised in Sebastopol, CA and of Japanese, Portuguese, French and Irish descent.
Justin dreamed of bringing his family sauce to market since he was a kid during the holidays. Justin, Grandmother Judy and his family would brew batches of their sauce to give out to clients of their family landscape business. Many rave reviews and requests for more and offers to purchase always followed. Justin started working on his business back in 2013 making sure that he would keep the integrity of the sauce and making it a way to truly honor his family heritage and values. We talk about the many struggles , iterations of getting through the difficulty of bringing a consumer packed goods product to market. Six years later, his childhood dream was a reality in 2019. Justin created by Bachan‘s Japanese barbecue sauce, which is a true representation of the sauce that his family made during the holidays for so many years.
I sat down with Justin and we talked about his childhood eats what it’s like, growing up being half Japanese, and many of the support and naysayers that he received growing the sauce company. We go over every sauce that Bachan’s currently offer, including his favorites, recipes and what it takes to create such a great sauce company and team.
Appreciate Justin for taking the time out of his busy schedule to sit down and talk in person with me on the podcast. Having been a customer and a long time user of the sauce; this was a culmination of a few years in the making and a full circle moment. Thank you to the Bachan’s team for their continued support in my journey as well.
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EPISODE 0035 - Franchesca Duval - Alchemist Farm
Alchemist Farm is a small family farm team headed up by Franchesca & Ryan Duval along with their two children in Northern California. Known for being pioneers of humane breeding and hatching, no male chicks are killed on their farm as they are at large scale hatcheries and all of their heritage breeding groups are free to roam on their separate pastures.
Franchesca was born and raised in Santa Cruz, CA of German, Greek and Italian descent. Franchesca’s great grandfather owned a German bakery in San Francisco. Franchesca was studying to be a midwife and a psychologist before she had the opportunity to start her own project. After finding out male chicks are killed at large scale hatcheries; Franchesca and her husband Ryan decided to start hatching their own. Starting with six eggs and a small incubator , the start of Alchemist Farm began.
Franchesca shares her knowledge and experience on the podcast about heritage breeds, egg color, feed for chickens and answering many of your pressing common questions.
Alchemist Farm raises their chickens for health, temperament, egg color and climate resilience. Their birds are raised for hatching eggs and sending baby chicks all over the US. The farm is also Zero waste and using solar power to make a better impact on the world.
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EPISODE 0034 - Sean Nguyen - PapaWagyu
Sean Nguyen is the founder/owner of PapaWagyu. Sean is of Vietnamese descent and born and raised in San Jose,CA.
We go over how we became friends through food and began working events together. Going over his family meals growing up like : Bun Bo Hue & Pho noodle soups. After traveling to Japan, the dream was planted to somehow work in the hospitality industry with food.
Sean continued to work for his family’s furniture business and later took a job in the Tech industry always finding ways to help people.
PapaWagyu was started by Sean during the pandemic to connect communities of people together through food. An e-commerce business purveying high-end Japanese, Australian and American Wagyu which is Japanese for(Beef). Taking the time to find the best farms with a passion for raising the best cattle. Sean breaks down the grading system to understand what you’re eating. Sean recently visited the Bushu farm in Japan which is part of the Hasegawa Family.
PapaWagyu has also partnered with Maruhide USA which supplies fresh Santa Barbara Uni (sea urchin).
Sean and I discuss our ideas of success and his favorite tools too. Really appreciate Sean for his friendship and support in my journey as well and look forward to what’s next for the future.
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EPISODE 0033 - Matthew Kosoy - Rosalind Bakery
Matthew Kosoy from Mt. Laurel New Jersey is the founder & owner of Rosalind Bakery in Pacifica, CA. The bakery is named after Matthew’s grandmother, a nod to his family roots. The tech-worker-turned-baker started making sourdough as a side hustle, but his loaves quickly became a staple of the local farmer’s market. Matt had enough demand to open a storefront in 2019, where he continues to draw carb-hungry fans of his delicious baked goods.
Podcast was recorded on location at the bakery.
Really appreciate Matt’s support for my podcast and enjoyed our conversation about East Coast eats, his family influence on food, the science of baking & running a business and the revitalization of his community.
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Must listen to
Dave is an awesome human being and this show brings up nostalgia of your childhood. Good food is a connector and an awesome way to get introduced to other cultures. Every episode has fun conversations with a wide range of guests.
I always want to eat the food items talked about in each episode. Dave’s episode makes me need dry aged brisket!! I never knew it was a thing!