My career started at Fox Concepts while I was going through school as a prep cook. By the time I graduated in late 2010 from Scottsdale Community Culinary school, I was already a lead line cook at a restaurant called the Greene House. This was late 2011 and I was already a sous chef for Arizonas biggest restaurant group but it wasn't enough for me, I wanted more. I went on to become a Corporate Opener and developer for Fox Concepts. In 2012 I traveled for them the first six months opening various restaurants in San Diego, Austin, Denver, New York. Then they came to me and said they are going to need me for six months to open the biggest project they have ever opened, it was to be opened in Las Vegas. It was culinary dropout btw...so the six months in Vegas were crazy, I worked 16 hours a day 6-7 days a week. then becoming the Executive chef of Culinary Dropout in Las Vegas.
Then one day I changed my mentality and quit it it all.. I still had four months left in Vegas and I couldn't convince any chef to hire me for only four months so my best friend at the time worked at a premier craft cocktail and wine bar in downtown. They needed a bar back and I was their guy. Over those four months it was a like a crash course for everything liquor, I learned proper whiskey drinks, I learned about wines and variations, I became a beer and wine snob I loved it, it showed me a whole new side to my craft. Showed me that I'm not passionate about food but just the whole business industry as a whole. It was a great experience and that's when my restaurant concept really started to get developed. When I returned to phoenix I met with a chef/mentor of mine and turned around a completely failing business. Central bistro; beautiful kitchen and restaurant, great potential, but the owner had no idea what he was doing. My chef and I were hired to basically give it one last ditch of effort tand we sure did. We went from to non chef driven to completely farm to table, we butchered all our own meats in house, all fresh pastas done daily, sauce work as if we were in New York at a fine dining restaurant. We hired all our own staff many of who already worked for us before. Six months in we were having articles written about what we were doing, people came in just for us, it was amazing. We did so well the owner needed my chef somewhere else undo another failing restaurant, so that left me in charge of Central Bistro. Finally I'm back where I wanted to be, the chef of a restaurant I had control of, I wrote the menu, I made the calls.
My dad was pushing me all last year to open my own place for a while. I had my ducks in a row and know what kind of concept I wanted, so I said okay lets do it. I decided I was going to open my own place and meanwhile use pop up PHX as my test kitchen, and my way to create my own name for myself. So as of 2016 I work for myself and I cook from the heart.
The whole idea behind pop-up PHX is not only a way to express myself but a way to completely customize and take control of the experience. It’s also about me pushing the limits and really seeing what I can get out of my staff and myself. After every shift you should look in the mirror and say I just did that!?! I just had an idea that I wanted to show PHX, an idea that other chefs around the country are executing. Out here it's just lackluster and boring. So that's where I decided to go with pop up PHX. It's 12 guests that I get to absolutely push limits upon every single week. And we do it. We time between courses, we have a pre shift discussing what silverware goes with what, we discuss wine and service techniques. It's about a culture. That's what we're trying to show. And you can only show this through work and not words…