Chef, broadcaster and cookbook author Chuck Hughes was in Toronto recently to promote his second collection of recipes, Chuck’s Day Off. Hughes’ television career (which famously included defeating Bobby Flay on Iron Chef America in 2011) and celebrity status belies his bona fides as a restaurateur. New Brunswick born but Montreal raised, Hughes got his chops in the kitchen under David MacMillan at Globe before opening Garde Manger in the Old City in 2006. The rest is history, with Food Network Canada and Cooking Channel USA TV Shows, books and his second restaurant a few blocks away from the first, Le Bremner.
I caught up with Hughes at his publisher, HarperCollins Canada’s offices to talk about Chuck’s Day Off, the book for the video. He was in good spirits despite recently being diagnosed with labrynthintis, or ‘vertigo’ – a promotional tour that was set for June had been cancelled because of it, and he had recovered enough from its symptoms of dizziness and nausea to go on the road again. The book is very much centred in Hughes life, and the life of his restaurants, and we talked about the red hot food scene in Montreal and how, I was surprised to learn, his ambition is to open his next restaurant in Toronto.
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Malcolm Jolley is a founding editor of Good Food Revolution and Executive Director of Good Food Media, the company that publishes it. Follow him at twitter.com/malcolmjolley