CLT Burger Week Interview with Chef Jacob Vargo
Elevate Lifestyle: Give us some back-ground info on yourself? I am 24 years old, moved to charlotte from Ohio to attend Johnson and Wales University. And have been furthering my culinary and managerial skills ever since.
EL: When did you know you wanted to be a chef? I always knew I was going to be a Chef, my family has owned 2 restaurants in Ohio that I was a big part of. I was born into it some would say.
EL: Where were you trained? I was trained at Johnson and Wales University.
EL: How do you get your inspiration? I get my inspiration from the people around me, trying to do the best I can so that everyone can be stronger.
EL: When are you happiest at work? I am the happiest at work when I am cooking on the line, that’s what we are here to do is cook.
EL: What is the best piece of advice that you can give a home enthusiast? The best advice I could give to a home enthusiast would be to not to try and get ahead of yourself and or have crazy high expectations. Sometimes you have to make something 100 times to figure it out.
EL: Who in the food world do you admire the most? My personal favorite chef is Emeril Lagasse, he is a Johnson and wales Alumni with some interesting stories to boot.
EL: What is the weirdest request you have ever received while cooking burgers? One time when I was working fine dining someone ordered Tartar and when they got it they didn’t know why it wasn’t cooked so the sent it back and asked us to bring it to Medium effectively turning the Tartar into a burger.
EL: What do you do for fun? In my off time I enjoy Golfing, and basketball.
EL: Where is your favorite place in the world? My favorite place in the world would have to be where ever I can get my family together and spend time with them doesn’t matter the destination.
EL: What do you love most about your job? I love the fact that I can get a chance to put my name on something and really give it my personal touch so that people from all over can come here and tell their friends.
EL: What trends are you noticing regarding burgers? I am noticing a lot if overstuffed burgers, with 4,5 or 6 toppings, which I feel like a simpler way is the way to go.
EL: What foods do you like to pair with burgers and why? The best foods that pair with a burger really depends on the burger I love a BBQ Buffalo burger with sweet potato fries.
EL: What’s your favorite type of burger? My favorite type of burger would have to be a Lamb Burger covered in feta cheese.
EL: Where is the best place you ever had a burger? The best burger I have ever eaten was at the Local of course.
EL: How do you like to cook your burgers gas, or grill? I prefer my burgers cooked on a wood or charcoal grill.
EL: Any burger tips for the public? A tip I would have for the public is just make sure you season your burgers well and every time no matter what else is on it you will have a pretty good burger.
EL: How do you insure/test the quality of your ingredients? We insure the quality of our ingredients by keeping fresh items prepped, and continually taste tasting which isn’t a bad part of the job.
EL: Tell me 3 things that you consider to be your strengths. Three strengths that I have is a strong work ethic, The ability to Lead, and the want for growth that I have for myself to continue learning new skills.
105 East 5th Street
www.TheLocalCharlotte.com | 704.347.0035
Hours of Business: Sunday through Saturday 11 am to 2 am