Monday, September 17, 2012

A Man of Many Hats

I tend to like big wide brim hats, as many of my photos on here have shown, but when it comes to life, it's far to short to wear the hat of a single skill or profession. Recently when I jokingly posted on Facebook about my new acting role, some made a list of all the things I do or have done. When I got to thinking about it, I have actually taken on far more roles than the average 35 year old, and though my skills in a few of these fields is certainly a bit shallow, I've also worked hard and become rather adept at others. I may not be the most interesting man in the world, as one friend quipped, but I have worked hard at a number of skills that I currently combine and use to make for an enjoyable life.

What many of these roles seem to have in common is the act of creation. As someone who was always a very down to earth, athletic and no-nonsense kind of guy it took me most of my life to realize that at heart what I really loved was the art of creation. Be it creating food, or philosophical systems, graphic design, business plans, games, cocktails or exercise regimen what I love is making things and figuring out a better way to do things. The list below of the hats I wear on occasion, while quite varied has a recurring theme of creating something.

Restaurateur:  Somehow I ended up running and owning a restaurant. Not just any restaurant, but arguably one of the nicest in Kathmandu. My role here is one of part manager, part entertainer, part businessman, and part salesman. Talking about or selling the idea of the of the restaurant is something that comes easy to me because I really love it and believe we've put something special together. The other parts are what will make it financially viable and fun for other people to be here, which is the point of creating it in the first place. It also means having a vision for not only creating the place that we have, but having one for where it can go, and how to steer its future. 

Chef: I love food. I've always loved food. My mother tells me when I was a small child I use to ask for blue cheese dressing, and when I turned 5 my Grandmother bought a very large lobster for me. What I love about working with food is how many dimensions you have to work with; there's texture, smell, appearance and taste. Now cooking without financial restrictions can be challenging, but working within the bounds of what is financially viable, works within the menu and your kitchen and then also can be molded into something that can appeal to all those senses is something that is very challenging, and when done well I find very rewarding. Not everyone will love what you make, but I get enough people thanking me for creating the things that I do on a regular basis that I'm happy with what we've put together here. It's a job I really love.

Bartender- I know the trend is to say mixologist....but I'm not a fan of the term. I like making good drinks, ones that a variety of people will enjoy, and I like experimenting with flavors. One of my goals when opening this restaurant was to create a bar where people would order and drink cocktails. Nepal being a beer and whiskey drinking country, many people were skeptical if there was a market for it here, but the cocktails that we have created here have been outselling all else. Who knew Ecuadorian cocoa infused tequila, mixed with vanilla infused bourbon, cinnamon tincture and bit of simple syrup would be so good? Not me until I tried it, but damn those New World Chais are my favorites. 

The Sandwich & Burger Page I Designed For the Grill House
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