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Ask a Chef: "Top Chef" Winner Hosea Rosenberg

Hilary Deutsch

September 01, 2015

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After reigning supreme on Top Chef: New York, Hosea Rosenberg went on to make an indelible mark on Boulder’s food scene with his Blackbelly concept. Later this month, the acclaimed toque will bring his talents back to the Big Apple to showcase facets of his farm, restaurant, and butcher shop for a dining experience from the source to the plate. In anticipation of his upcoming dinner, we spoke to Rosenberg about his guilty-pleasure foods, dry-aged beef, and the sage advice he received from Jacques Pépin.

What is your inspiration behind the menu for this Beard House event? 

To showcase what we’re doing at the new restaurant—mainly the butchery, dry-aging, and dry-curing.

What's a dish on your Beard House event menu that you're especially excited about or proud of, and why?

The 100-day-aged beef. The flavors get so intense and concentrated after dry-aging for that long. It's really something unique.

What’s your guilty-pleasure food? 

Chili Cheese Fritos on a road trip.

Tell us about the last great meal you ate.

I just got back from San Francisco. On the last day, we went to a number of different restaurants, and they all were exceptional: Nopa, Marlowe, Boulettes Larder, Anchor Oyster Bar, Cotogna, and Delfina, to name a few.

If you could cook one meal for any person (historical, famous, living, or dead), who would be and what you serve them?

I would cook a roast chicken for my grandparents (all of them), as they all passed before I "made it" as a chef. They were all very concerned that I had left behind a promising career as an engineer and threw it away to become a "cook!"

What was your first job in the industry? Who gave you your first big break?

I started as a dishwasher and have held just about every job there is in the industry since then. My big break was when Kevin Taylor promoted me to my first head chef position.

What are the best places to eat in your city these days?

In Boulder, OAK at fourteenth and Basta are my favorites. I also love sitting at the bar at Brasserie Ten Ten. In Denver, the scene is just exploding. Too many to name, but what Alex Seidel, Jen Jasinski, Troy Guard, Delores Tronco, and Lon Symensma are doing is all so very inspiring.

What’s the best advice you’ve ever received? 

Jacques Pépin told me to cook with my heart, not my head.