The Daily Meal caught up with chef Trevor Higgins to learn about how his travels have influenced his work. Higgins is the executive chef at Roost in Greenville, S.C., which serves "local, organic, and seasonal food of the highest quality, cooked with care and at an honest price." In addition to being inspired by his foreign travels, he is also influenced by his early childhood experiences in his grandparents’ garden in Cleveland, Tenn.
The Daily Meal: What has been your most inspirational food experience while traveling?
Trevor Higgins: I had the most unbelievable meal at a restaurant called La Buca in Parma, Italy. It was a simple dish of pork cheek raviolis with Parmesan and butter, but the way it was made, and how fresh it was showed that you don’t have to do a lot with simple and beautiful ingredients. It was the best meal I ever had.
TDM: What’s your favorite kitchen souvenir from your travels?
TH: The 20-year aged balsamic vinegar I got in Modena, Italy, from a lady who made it in her attic. I’ve had it for five years now, and only use it two or three times a year because I’m trying to stretch it out. It’s much stronger and sweeter than other vinegars — if you use an eye-dropper, three or four drops are all you would need.
TDM: If you could eat your way through one country, which one would it be and why?
TH: Thailand, because I’m not very well-versed in Thai cooking. It’s so foreign to me, but I’ve read a lot about it and want to learn more about it. I love spicy food!