North County EDC Business Journal

SPRING 2016 // ISSUE 11

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l VOICES NORTH COUNTY BUSINESS JOURNAL x SPRING 2016 x BY amanda weston I n many ways, North County remains an un- tapped market when it comes to innovative cuisine. With plenty of room left for growth in individual communities, a natural habitat for creativity and locals and tourists alike eager and actively searching for top-notch food and bever- ages, possibilities for the restaurant industry in North County are only limited by what restaurant maestros can dream up. We sat down with four local restaurant profes- sionals to get their take on the state of North County cuisine. The verdict? North County cuisine is thriving, growing, and increasingly drawing more people – and therefore more business – to cities up and down the coast. Click through the slideshow to view them all >> FOOD FOR THOUGHT n 4 RESTAURANT PROFESSIONALS SERVE UP THEIR IMPRESSIONS OF NORTH COUNTY CUISINE NORTH COUNTY CUISINE STEVE ZURKEY Executive Chef, 333 Pacific Quick Introduction From my humble roots as a dishwasher in Youngstown, Ohio, I knew at an early age that the restaurant business was the medium in which I could express myself cre- atively. I have a culinary degree from Johnson and Wales Uni- versity in Miami, Florida. What does North County cuisine mean to you? It's elegant but approachable. I think of hip and trendy taking on the clas- sics in a way that makes you reminisce about eating fish tacos with sand between your toes and the sun on your face. Some- thing that an epicurian and a casual diner would both savor, and something that takes advantage of all of the resources available to us: local produce, fresh seafood, an amazing craft brewing community, and creative minds from all over. What could North County do to increase its cuisine profile? I would advise diners from all over to expand their horizons. At the end of the day, a chef's job is still to please the guest, so if the audience is more open to experience the unknown, it can allow the artist to express themselves to the fullest. How is North County a hub for innovative cuisine? I love the up-and-coming buzz, the creative people, and the speed here. It's not over-crowded, and there's a certain vibe here that gets lost when the buildings get too tall. What are the top 3 ingredients used at your restaurant? The honest truth would put kosher salt and black pep- per at one and two, but I'll go with what pulls my heart strings next: pork belly. Honestly, if bacon ever goes out of style I'll hang up my Chef's coat.

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