On The Line: Oge Dalken of Chapter One: The Modern Local, Part Two
Part Two of On The Line provides even more insight on Chapter One's resident culinary artist, Chef Oge. He not only analogizes how a career in food is like loving a gorgeous woman, but provides a spoiler on their upcoming Happy Hour....but you don't have to take my word for it. If you missed yesterday's segment, you can catch up here. And stop by tomorrow for a recipe fit for a King.
Hardest lesson you've learned:
Life. It can be a bitch sometimes.
What would your last meal on Earth be?
May I repeat....Detroit's American Coney Island Hot Dog and a Busch beer.
Who's your hero, culinary or otherwise?
Morimoto. Absolute genius.
Is the menu completely rolled out yet?
It will never be complete! We are constantly changing with the season and with whatever ingredients we can get our hands on. As for the menu right now, yes, we have all items in...for now. Also, our tapas "After-Office" started this week. It's our fun version of Happy Hour.
Where do you get your ingredients from?
We are trying to establish relationships with local farms. Our accountant hates me because we have probably 50 purveyors.
What is the biggest misconception you think Americans have about bar food? One stereotype is that everything is deep fried finger food.
Bar food is great; Small tapas-style dishes that are creative and fun, without being pretentious. That's how we see it. No rules, just amazing bites and crazy variety. It gives you the ability to do whatever you want in the kitchen.
What dish would you tell newcomers to Chapter One to try first?
They should start with the Smoked Salmon Nachos and then have a Beef Culotte.
What would you be doing if you weren't in this business?
That is the hardest question on this sheet. I guess I would be in Detroit working the factory or in the music business.
What advice do you have for those who might be thinking about a career in food?
Don't do it....Haha. It is like that gorgeous woman that you love but you know is no good for you. Long hours, late nights, and an undying passion for creation and hospitality that is the most addicting drug I have ever known. If you want to get in this industry, you better be very serious about it. It's not the glamorous, jet-setting lifestyle portrayed on TV; it's hard work (though the perks are pretty amazing!).
What do you see yourself doing in five years? Ten years?
Growing this company, creating new concepts and traveling the world eating and drinking for inspiration.
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