Sarducci's Chef Jeff Butterfield Dishes On What It's Like In The Kitchen
● By Ryan Frisch
We caught up with Chef Jeff Butterfield of Sarducci's Restaurant to see what it's like to be in the kitchen. Here's the full interview:
1. What attracted you to cooking in the first place? What makes it special to you?
I have always loved cooking from a young age, I always enjoyed helping around thanksgiving and Christmas because I loved to eat and wasn't shy to anything new. My first job was as a dishwasher and after my first day I was hooked, my chef Dale Conoscenti treated me like a son, and I worked extremely hard for him because he gave me a job and opened my eyes to this awesome way of life. Not only was he truly inspirational but he was just "the man".
2. How/Where did you get your start? Was there someone who got you into it?
What makes this industry so special are the people you get to meet. I have friends all over the country, some that I haven't talked to in years but if we were put together, it would be just like old times. Every once in a while I'll be making something, and I will go back to that restaurant in my mind and remember what exactly was happening with the dish or conversation, that to me is special.
3. What's something people usually assume about being a cook that's simply not true?
I think people look at being a cook as a hard job or a job that is not as desirable. If you're surrounded by good people that love cooking, and the feeling of a successful dinner rush, then you have it made. Happiness is key and cooks and chefs have way more fun with there day or night then most people.
4. Whats your personal favorite dish?
People always ask what's your favorite dish or ingredient. I just shrug my shoulders and say "anything that is new to me". The learning never stops. Food is so big there is not one thing I could put my finger on, but if I had to it would have to be cheese
5. Whats the funniest, strangest, most unusual thing you've seen in the kitchen?
I'll never forget this Halloween party that my restaurant was putting on. Fifty dollars all you can drink and eat. I had this huge buffet set with mostly greasy foods one was buffalo hot wings. The place was packed and all the waitresses came back saying that there eyes were burning and people can't see and that the wings are smoking on the buffet line. I look at my cook and very good friend Bj and say did you put any water in the steam pan? He said no. It was pure tear gas, just the look on his face was priceless. He literally smoked out the place. We later laughed over some beers.
Working in the kitchen you see strange and unusual things almost everyday. Just watching and listening to the people talk can absolutely be entertaining especially here at Sarduccis. I have worked at two haunted places where ghostly things would happen, the cooler was down in the basement of this one place and I would be running in and out terrified of seeing something.
6. Anything else we should know about you, Sarduccis, your team, etc.?
I'm engaged to my fiancé Emily
Michaud, she is very supportive of my career which is a blessing. We have
two dogs Lincoln and Mason, they keep us both very busy and entertained.
I feel that I have the best staff and they drive me to work for them, without
them I wouldn't be able to pull it off.