The Daily Meal caught up with Charleston, S.C., chef Ken Vedrinski to learn about how his travels influence his work. Vedrinski is the owner and chef of the Italian restaurant Trattoria Lucca and the newly opened Coda del Pesce, another Italian restaurant focused on serving local and sustainably sourced seafood.
The Daily Meal: What has been your most inspirational food experience while traveling?
Ken Vedrinski: A restaurant on the Adriatic Sea in Italy, Clandestino, has been my most inspirational food experience. The view was spectacular and you look out at the sea and then everything you eat is directly from the sea — talk about connection. That is what I hope to do at Coda del Pesce. We have the views and what we will serve will be coming from mostly the ocean you overlook while dining. The chef was Michelin-two-star, which also speaks volumes. Everything was so smart and the concept was great, an Italian sushi (suci) bar.
TDM: What’s your favorite kitchen souvenir from your travels?
KV: A corzetti pasta stamp that is really hard to find. I have loved using it at Trattoria Lucca on certain dishes.
TDM: If you could eat your way through one country, which one would it be and why?
KV: Obviously with my love for the cuisine, Italy. Every province is so different and the style, even clothing is so different, almost wild. I love how everyone is fiercely independent and have such love and passion for their respected neighborhoods. And the food and wine — all amazing! I go a few times a year for inspiration and to meet new winemakers that I can showcase at my two restaurants. Some things we pour no one else in the city, state, and sometimes country pours.