On the Line: Josh Severson Of Selanne Steak Tavern, Part Two
Wine and dine
Photo courtesy Selanne Steak Tavern
If there was one thing I took away from my interview with Josh, it was that he would rather be busy than at rest. Don't believe me? Well, that's what part two is for.
Remember that our interviews always begin the day before. Sit down with a cool beverage before finishing with part two. You'll be glad you did.
When you're not in the kitchen, what are you doing in your free time? So that's how you spell free time? I try to spend time with my boys, teaching them the ropes of life and occasionally showing them how to break down a bluefin or make fresh pasta. I love spending my personal time on the water - wakeboarding, surfing, kiteboarding. For me, it's very calming.
Last movie watched. Super Troopers is an all-time favorite.
Hardest lesson you've learned: How to really manage a staff to work together, and how to bite my tongue before I say something that won't be constructive.
Where did you grow up? If you're not from Orange County, what brought you here? I grew up in the Pacific Northwest and hate to say, but sometimes I miss the weather. I lived in San Diego County for a while; was almost considered a native, but came to Orange County for a chef de cuisine position and now have this amazing opportunity with Teemu at Selanne Steak Tavern.
We hear you're an active person. Can you tell us about crabbing in your younger years? What would a typical session be like? Dad would wake us up at 4 a.m., throw us half asleep in the back of the truck and drive down to the docks, drop the boat in, get out to sea and drop multiple crab pots. We'd wait around for hours or drive around sightseeing or whale watch in the bay. Then, we'd come back and pick up the pots, and that's when the fun started.
There would be 50 to 100 or so crabs running around the boat, and as you're trying to scale 'em you're trying not to step on 'em or get pinched, or make sure they aren't sneaking off into the head and waiting in the toilet for an unsuspecting victim! It was always cold, but always exciting.
What are your favorite sports teams? Well, of course the Anaheim Ducks. Teemu and the team have brought a lot of inspiration to my kids. My youngest plays goalie now and idolizes Andersen and Beauchemin, Personally, I've always followed soccer and my favorite underdog would have to be the Tottenham Hotspurs.
Tell us something most people don't know about you. Funny enough, I play jazz flute.
How's your golf game? Do you have a preferred course? Everyone always asks if I can play. Well, I can play! I know Teemu plays golf almost every day, but he's yet to take me up on the challenge. By far, the favorite course that I've played on is Pebble Beach. It's absolutely gorgeous - I lost at least a dozen balls that day!
Last thing you looked up/searched online: The Restaurant Series on YouTube. It's a hilarious spoof on restaurants, and it cheers me up sometimes.
Do you have any skills that are non-food related? I can rebuild a car and paint it, too.
Did you learn anything at Greystone that you might not have learned as quickly if you had not attended? Culinary school is definitely the right fit for certain people and it is good to get a proper education in this field. Although the reality is you learn much more from experience and being out in the world. I have worked for some great chefs and have learned some serious life lessons from them, while acquiring experiences and knowledge that I still use today. There are so many things that they just don't teach you in school.
What would you like to be doing if you weren't in the industry? I would like to be a ski/snowboard instructor in Vail, Colorado.
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