Why Because he finds an old-world way to interpret American classicsand he does it with humor.
Born Bloomfield, NJ, 1968.
Experience The Little Nell, Aspen, CO.
Why he became a chef "My mother taught home economics. I used to sit in on her cooking classes when I was in grade school. It was so much fun, and the students were actually nice to me. I was Miss Mosc's son."
His favorite items on Adega's menu Alphabet soup, made with egg noodles, duck confit, onion relish and shaved celery; and venison steak-and-eggs, made with fried duck eggs and served with butter-braised cabbage and candied endive.
Ingredient obsession Tasmanian honey. "It's got musky, barklike qualities. I use it on my country-fried rabbit loin."
Favorite cheap eat A burger at the Cherry Cricket in Denver. "They know how to cook it properly. If you order medium rare, you get medium rare. The bun is soft but doesn't break apart, and you can get delicious toppings like grilled Bermuda onions."
Won Best New Chef at: Adega, Denver (closed)
Congratulations to Mei Lin, winner of Top Chef Season 12.