The People’s Best New Chef 2013
Location Bainbridge Island, WA
Why He’s Amazing Because his cooking is the best possible version of a refined and well-traveled French grandmother, making as much by hand and using as many local ingredients as possible.
Culinary School The Art Institute of Seattle
Background Il Bistro, The Apartment Bistro & Martini Lounge, Harvest Vine, Crémant (Seattle)
Quintessential Dish Manila clams with sweet cream, house-cured bacon, Yukon Gold potatoes, celery and herbs
Earliest Cooking Memory Growing up in Alaska, “our annual trip to Chitina, where we fished the Copper River for chinook and sockeye salmon. We held a little fish camp to process the 50-plus fish we could come back with, and we filleted, smoked and canned our catch.”
Culinary Style “I cook European-influenced Pacific Northwestern food. It makes sense: The climate in the Seattle area is pretty similar to northern Spain. And we have the same snails that they have in Burgundy.”
Quirky Tasting Menu It reads, “Name your price.” Once you do, McGill works from there to create dishes within the designated budget.
Recent Project A next-door deli and mercantile where shoppers can purchase soups and sandwiches as well as McGill’s cured meats and other local products.
Alaska’s Influence “I have a massive appreciation for things that come out of the ground, because it’s subarctic in Fairbanks, where I’m from. The bounty of the Northwest is almost overwhelming.”