The Top Chef Season One winner shows his love for Thai flavors at his Manhattan restaurant Kin Shop. Here, he tells F&W's Kate Krader about more of his passions, including the TV series Game of Thrones.
1. Israeli Poker
"My wife, Meredith, and I just learned this game. It's like solitaire. You set up rows of cards and draw them down to get the best hand."
2. Beastie Boys
"My favorite song is anything from their old album Licensed to Ill."
"We have an Italian-American feast. We start with antipasti: cured meat, marinated artichokes, cheeses. Next is lasagna. Then it's turkey with all the fixings. It's, like, an eight-hour meal."
4. Thai Shrimp-and-Coconut Soup
"This is a feel-good soup for me; I eat it year round. I love the rich coconut milk, combined with the sweetness of the shrimp and the heat of the chiles."
"I use this herb in place of cilantro anywhere I can; it's 10 times better. It's recao in Spanish, or pak chi farang in Thai. I like to grind it into curry pastes."
6. Thai Boxing
"That's my sport. It's also called Muay Thai or the Art of Eight Points. You use fists, elbows, knees, feet. My kicks are like a jackhammer."
"I went tuna fishing with Tom Colicchio. I put squid on my lure, but Tom won't put fresh bait on a rubber lure—he's a purist. He gave me grief, but I didn't care, I wanted to catch something."
8. Game of Thrones
"This show on HBO is out of control. It's about power struggles, getting to the top. It's a fictional story that looks like it's set in medieval times."
9. Fighter Pilot
"If I had 20/20 vision, that's what I'd want to be. In second grade, my teacher told me I couldn't be a pilot because of my bad eyesight. I was heartbroken."
"I'm a Puma guy. I only have one pair at a time. I've got suede ones right now that are all black—black on black with black laces."