- Tell us a little about yourself. How did you get introduced to cooking and how did you become executive chef at Henry’s?
I was born in Bangkok, Thailand of two American Diplomats. I spent most of my childhood overseas before returning to the states to go to Johnson & Wales University in Providence, RI. Living in Singapore, the Philippines, and graduating high school in Milan, Italy had a lot to do with my introduction into cooking. My parents where always great cooks, and they tended to cook foods from the various placed we lived, while we lived there. Being the son of a Diplomat in Milan, Italy through high school was an experience all in its own! I ALMOST stayed in Europe, but finally decided to return to the states for college. My professional journeys after college had me all over the U.S., accepting my first Executive Chef position when I was 27 in Northern Michigan, Harbor Springs at a restaurant called Blue Corn Grille (Authentic Mexican & Contemporary Southwestern). From there, I bounced around a bit in North Carolina and ended up moving my family to Boynton Beach about two and a half years ago. I started at Burt & Max’s, owned by Rapoport Restaurant Group before moving to Henry’s in 2016, also owned by Rapoport’s.
- What is your favorite type of cuisine to cook? What is your favorite dish to make? What is your favorite dish to eat?
My favorite cuisine to cook is a hard question. Throughout my career I have been fortunate enough to have been exposed to a multitude of cuisines and cultures, pin pointing ONE is really challenging for me. I guess I have a true appreciation for the crossover of ingredients in South East Asian cooking and Mexican cooking, two different cuisines that I love to cook AND love to eat. Street foods from those areas are probably my “go to” for eating out. Street food is where the boldest, most unrefined, and the most “in your face” flavors are. I will NEVER forget the smells and flavors of Singapore’s Newton Circus street food market. My last experience of it was over 35 years ago, but I can still taste the chicken and pork satay with peanut sauce!
- Where do you like to go when you go out for a meal?
My wife and I don’t go out very often, with all of our kids palate’s to contend with and the simple fact that I can cook it how we all like it at home and not set myself up for disappointment at a restaurant. However, I will venture out for good Indian on occasion. Of course great burgers and fries at Burgerfi are hard to beat after coming off of the beach on a Sunday afternoon!
- Tell us about the new summer menu at Henry’s. What are the must-try items?
The new summer menu at Henry’s is honestly inspired a lot by my childhood. Lots of Asian flavors and a few Italian favorites, as those are the foods that I think of first when I think of hot summer times. The Ginger Glazed Pork Tenderloin with Chinese Eggplant Lo mien is probably one of my favorite dishes on the menu right now. Just the smell of it sends me back to Newton Circus in Singapore!
- When you aren’t in the kitchen where can we find you and what are you doing?
If I’m not in the kitchen, generally I am spending time with my wife and kids. Whether we are at the pool, at the beach, skateboarding through our neighborhood (yes, all five of us have skateboards!) or just chilling at home. They are where my heart is. Of course a Sunday afternoon doesn’t feel complete without washing the “dark knight,” aka my Black Audi.