(This is something I wrote months after my stage at Coi in San Francisco.)
I can’t stop thinking about Coi. Now that I’ve had time to let it all sink in and now that I’ve got some perspective I am feeling so inspired from what I soaked in there. I just wasn’t ready at the time to be thinking that way but now that they’ve put the wheels in motion I’m seeing cooking differently. Chef Daniel is such a thinker, and it is very inspirational to be around someone who is constantly creating, evolving and pushing. His favorite sous chef told me that he doesn’t like to work at the restaurants that do lots of covers to make money but sacrifice quality. He says that he wants to cook for the pleasure of creating the best food he can with nothing getting in the way of that. The pleasure of pure beautiful creation that isn’t money driven.
I just finished reading the Reach of a Chef by Michael Rhulman and the chapter about Masa’s truly inspired me, I think because of the seed that was planted in my head at Coi.
Masa cooks purely for the pleasure of creating the best food that he can, and it seems that there are many parallels between him and chef Daniel. The love and pleasure of creating the best you can. It is also weird that Masa’s is one of the most expensive restaurants in America and that Coi is also very expensive, but it really doesn’t seem to be about money somehow. It’s like they would be doing what they do with 6 customers a night or with 100 customers a night. But they wouldn’t want 100 customers a night because then the quality of the food would suffer. Like at Coi they make their own butter not just because it is a superior product but because of the primal feeling of making butter. Its not just, I make this to sell for money, its, I’ve had the process of making the best thing that I can make and I am driven by reasons and passion.