My Charleston

Chef Ja­son Stan­hope

Where Charleston - - Contents -

The re­cent James Beard Award win­ner talks about Charleston’s food scene and things he likes to do.

A former Divi­sion II col­lege foot­ball player, Stan­hope re­ceived the 2015 James Beard Foundation Award for Best Chef: South­east. The ex­ec­u­tive chef at FIG [Food Is Good] on Meet­ing Street, Stan­hope’s restau­rant serves sea­son­ally in­spired cui­sine with a com­mit­ment to us­ing lo­cal and sus­tain­able foods. —DUSTIN TURNER

What is your fa­vorite thing to do in Charleston on a day off?

I usu­ally spend time with my girl­friend and take the Har­ley and go to Edisto or one of the other beaches— just get on the high­way and off the penin­sula. And visit farm­ers; I love do­ing that. I’m lucky in that I live in an apart­ment in down­town Charleston, so in my down­time when I’m there, we just grill out on my big porch and take it easy.

You have worked in San Fran­cisco. How does the San Fran­cisco food scene com­pare to Charleston’s?

There ac­tu­ally are incredible sim­i­lar­i­ties with the driv­ing forces be­hind our menus and cook­ing in the now. San Fran­cisco, though, has huge di­ver­sity in cul­ture, and Cal­i­for­nia’s agri­cul­ture is so di­verse with lots of dif­fer­ent prod­ucts, but with the heat and the wa­ter, the food that grows down here is very spe­cific. Both have great food scenes.

What does it mean to you as a chef to win a James Beard Award?

That’s some­thing I’ve been dream­ing about for a long time. I thought it might be a pos­si­bil­ity be­cause of the won­der­ful men­tor­ship of Mike Lata (with whom Stan­hope works at FIG). I just never thought it would hap­pen so soon. And he won it six years ago. So that’s two awards un­der one roof. It’s great con­fir­ma­tion that FIG is rel­e­vant af­ter 13 years.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from USA

© PressReader. All rights reserved.