Stumped on a New Year’s resolution for 2015? Hey, even star chefs have to wrangle with that problem! Take some inspiration from some of Chicago’s top chefs as the share their goals for the New Year.
Carolina Diaz, chef of Filini Bar & Restaurant: I want to dine at as many hole-in-the-wall restaurants as I can. I think it’s very important to taste authentic cuisine. I want to talk to the moms and pops and hear all the stories and learn their old school techniques.
Chris Macchia, executive chef of The Florentine: My resolution for 2015 is to work on being more creative for the kids menu at The Florentine. It's not something I’ve thought about very much before, but after having my first child in 2014, it made me realize they would probably like to eat well, too.
Cory Morris, chef of Mercat a la Planxa: My resolution for 2015 is to start moving away from using so much saffron in favor of other authentic and flavorful Catalan herbs and spices! I will be traveling to Spain in the spring to research Catalonia cooking techniques, ingredients, and flavor combinations.
Craig Couper, executive chef of Michael Jordan’s Steak House: My resolution is to stop procrastinating, both at work and at home. There’s the basement project that I started a year ago…
Erick Williams, executive chef of mk: My resolution is to plan one-on-one time with my wife. Our vacations are usually focused on great meals, and my attention is split between the flavors and my date. So my goal is to surround vacations with events that we can do together and have uninterrupted conversations, like hiking. Going for long walks used to sound so corny, but it is becoming a priority as I focus on being present in every sense of the word.
John Hogan, executive chef of River Roast: I will continue to find new ways to incorporate traditional technique in the kitchen, and travel even more in 2015 to keep gaining inspiration for menu ideas.
Lisa Bonjour, pastry chef of mk: My New Year's resolution is to eat and drink my weight in cheese and wine. I’m a whopping 105 lbs, so that's about 9 pounds of cheese and wine per month, which comes out to four bottles of wine and three and a half pounds of cheese.
Riley Huddleston, chef of IO Urban Roofscape: My resolutions are to earn certification as a level 1 sommelier or specialist in spirits; cook at least half of my meals at home (I didn't cook one meal at home in 2014); travel to eat at some of the best restaurants in the country and world; and join a sailing club to have the freedom to sail.
Takashi Yagihashi, chef of Slurping Turtle: I would like to go back to Japan and learn how to make miso from scratch.
Tim Graham, chef of Travelle: I resolve to cook more at home and let less food go bad in my refrigerator.
Tom Van Lente, chef of TWO: My New Year’s resolution is not to sweat the small stuff. There’s not enough time in the day to worry about the little things. I also want to keep moving forward and pushing myself harder.