Will Packwood

Why Because even his innovations betray his deep respect for classical techniques and traditions.

Born 1971, Portogruaro, Italy.

Education The Culinary Institute of America, Hyde Park, NY.

Experience Saleh Al Lago, Seattle; the Driskill Hotel and Mezzaluna Gateway, Austin, TX.

Earliest food memory "Our life in Italy was focused on the kitchen. On holidays we'd wake up, have breakfast, then start making lunch. And then as soon as lunch was over, we'd start making dinner."

Ingredient crush Figs.

Least favorite food "Americanized Italian, like manicotti."

Favorite local spot Cong Ly for pho, the Vietnamese noodle soup.

Favorite book Culinary Artistry by Andrew Dornenburg and Karen Page.

Source he couldn't live without His fish purveyors, Browne Trading in Maine and Triar in Florida. "It's hard to procure great seafood in Austin."

About his recipe Packwood's Milk Chocolate Banana Pie is an easy-to-make recipe inspired by a beloved childhood dessert, chocolate-dipped bananas.

Won Best New Chef at:) Emilia's (closed

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