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Chatting with Celebrity Chefs

National Restaurant Consultants meets celebrity chef Blais and Samuelsson

By National Restaurant Consultants - September 27, 2018

In the past month, our restaurant consultants have been making the rounds at food expos and restaurant conventions. It's one of the many ways that we ensure our consultants' years of experience don't stale our approach to the restaurant industry. In September, we had consultants both at the Shamrock Food Expo in Phoenix, as well at the Colorado Restaurant Show, held in Denver, and there were exciting outcomes at each convention.

In Phoenix, our local restaurant consultant is Jared Flowers, who has many years of experience working with chefs. He was honored to meet and chat with celebrity chef Richard Blais at Shamrock this year, and he has shared with us why Chef Blais's career is so important to the restaurant industry as a whole. 

"As a chef, I've had the opporutnity to cook with many celebrity chefs. There are so many different styles of cooking, so to say there is one that stands above the rest would be irresponsible," says Flowers. "But Richard Blais is up there! His take on modern American cuisine is inspired and revolutionary."

When it comes to creative ventures in the restaurant industry, a niche helps, and, most importantly, you have to be a risk-taker. You can't make a splash without being willing to try something new. Flowers remarks on Blais's scientific, but friendly approach to cooking that has made him stand out.

"The science he adds to cooking is nothing shrot of genius," he says, "And he's also just a nice guy. I had the opportunity to meet him in between cooking demonstrations at Shamrock, and he was just as cool as I had hoped. It's awesome how he continues to challenge the rules of food."

We also sent restaurant consultants to the Colorado Restaurant Show as sponsors of the "Ask An Expert" area. It was a privilege to field questions from dozens of food service professionals, and to engage in conversations with other speakers.

One such presenter was Marcus Samuelsson, a highly acclaimed chef and owner of New York City restaurants Red Rooster, Streetbird Rotisserie and Marcus B&P. Recognized as one of the industry's top chefs, Samuelsson's background is especially unique because of his formative years in Ethiopia and Sweden. He touched on this in his key note address, as well as a few key takeaways that our consultants plan to highlight for clients.
  1. Remember that your restaurant is a provider to the public. It feeds the public, but also has the opportunity to educate the public about food and nutrition.
  2. Understand the relevance of heritage. A person's roots, there family, are the cornerstones of their humanity, and staying human, celebrating that uniqueness is important to the industry.
  3. Remember your passion for food. Enjoy the work. It's not just a job--the dining industry is experiential and holistic. 
Our restaurant consultants make it a point to stay on top of industry trends and information. For more about what you can do for your restaurant, contact a consultant today. 

Photo by U.S. Embassy Bangkok, Thailand from Thailand (Chef Richard Blais at Baagadin) [CC BY 2.0  (], via Wikimedia Commons