Kiwi/Fijian chef Paul Patterson has had quite the culinary career so far. Having been mentored by Paris Butter's Nick Honeyman, he has since spent the past six years in Paris, working his way up the food chain.
Paul’s consulting business has been responsible for opening over 12 successful restaurants, while his position as head chef for Rosie’s Smokehouse has seen him picking up awards at the Memphis in May BBQ World Championship with celebrity chef Mitch Benjamin.
Fast forward to 2020 and Paul’s looking at his busiest year yet, with his Brooklyn, NY restaurant slated to open in just a few months. We had to chat with this international rock star of the restaurant world while he was back in NZ for Meatstock.
Your favourite recipe you cook for yourself?
Smoked chipotle chicken tacos with burnt tomato salsa.
The one thing you always have in your fridge?
Butter – I can’t live without it, I use it in everything!
If you could impart one piece of cooking knowledge to everyone, what would it be?
Seasoning is the base of everything. You can dramatically change a dish if the seasoning is done well.
Can you recall the moment when you knew you wanted to pursue a career in food?
When I was 15 and went out with a group of chef’s for a run around.
Your dish always reminds you of home?
I will eat Shepard’s pie all day…everyday!
Your go-to dinner party meal?
I generally bring booze and cook whatever they have in the house.
Who is your food hero?
I always look forward to Nick Honeyman’s restaurant in the southwest of France.
What music, if any, do you like to listen to while cooking?
James Brown - Motorhead or Cumbia.
Biggest kitchen disaster?
Great Barrier Island...when the best man of a wedding we were catering left the divider open between the freezer and the fridge losing 80% of our produce. Then we had to scramble to put a three-course meal together for 150 guests within four hours.
Your guilty pleasure?
Cigars and bourbon can’t go wrong.
In all your travels, where have you experienced the best food (and what was it)?
Rome, Italy – a Carbonara which ruined my life for three months trying to recreate it, which I still think about.
Is there one cookbook you go back to time and time again?
Not really – if there is a dish that I need to make or need a recipe for I will go through a bunch of different cook books and put them all together to create my own dish.
The kitchen utensil you can't live without?
8" chef’s knife and steel.
You're currently craving?
Because I’m back home, all of the seafood!
Any advice to new cooks?
Don’t be afraid to mess around and try different things.