GREG MARTIN | BISTRO MENIL
As a native Houstonian, GREG MARTIN lists his earliest culinary influences as both his grandmother’s and mother’s from scratch Southern home cooking. Most of his culinary career was spent working with the Schiller Del Grande restaurant group – as
Chef de Cuisine at Café Annie, a product developer at Taco Milagro and Corporate Chef with Café Express. As a world traveler, Greg spends as much free time as money can afford in France, Italy and Spain, providing great inspiration for Bistro Menil’s ever-evolving menu.
How did you learn to cook?
I got my first kitchen job at Chili’s when I was 18 (there were only two Chili’s at the time). I continued to cook while in college at UT Austin. I really enjoyed cooking, so when I got out of college I continued to cook. My best training was the 30 years I worked with Robert del Grande. Working for Robert was like being in graduate school for chefs.
What’s the first recipe you ever mastered? Chili. We made 10 gallons a day at Chili’s.
What ingredient can you not live without in the kitchen and why? Caviar – it can make an ordinary dish extraordinary.
What utensil can you not live without? The mandoline.
Favorite affordable wine? Tank Garage Winery “All or Nothing” – it’s a Zinfandel blend. I’m not a big Zin guy, but this wine is amazing!
Favorite place for dessert? Uchi. They always surprise me.
What are your favorite restaurant and dish? Kanomwan Thai, Tom Yom Gai.
Is there a food you won’t eat? No.
What is your comfort food? Pizza.
What do you see as the next food trend? Sous-vide.
At home, what do you keep on hand to serve drop-in guests? Champagne.
What would people be surprised to find in your home refrigerator? Borden’s French Onion Dip (my husband loves the stuff).
What would be your last meal? The chef’s menu at Chez L’Ami Jean in Paris.
Is there a particular food that is underappreciated? And what would you do to help its reputation? Duck confit. We use it on salads and brunch items too. We sell about 40 pounds of duck legs per week.
1513 W. Alabama | 713.904.3537 | www.bistromenil.com