Steve Schimoler is the chef/owner of Crop Bistro & Bar in Cleveland, OH. He’s also the owner of a product development company called Right Stuff, the creator of Localcrop.com, an online farmers market, and the driving force behind Cleveland Food Rocks, a non-profit band that links the city’s food and music scenes.
1. One thing you don’t know about me is that I’m not a bad painter once I actually sit down in front of a canvas and have the time to tune out the world.
2. If I could trade places with one chef it would be Dave Burke. I’ve known him for a long time and we have very similar whimsical approaches to food and I know we could jump into each other’s kitchens and not miss a beat.
3. One of my most memorable meals was at The Fat Duck in Bray, England. Heston Blumenthal just knocked it out of the park and it was the first time I really enjoyed eating a meal that judiciously reflected molecular gastronomy and delivered real innovation without being a high school science project.
4. If there were no Smucker’s Strawberry Preserves and Jif Creamy Peanut Butter I’d have no reason to live.
5. My go-to drink is Maker’s Mark on the rocks. I usually don’t even need to order it at the local haunts, it just appears. Not sure if that’s a good or bad thing.
6. If I were on death row my last meal would be a hefty slab of seared foie gras with blackberry gastrique, a grilled veal chop with morel cream and shaved white truffle, apple tarte tatin and a bottle of Sean Thackery’s Orion Syrah.
7. My worst culinary creation was ravioli filled with squid ink for a private party that the hostess requested. I thought the dish was a total train wreck, but the guests said they liked the ravioli. They had to be politely lying.
8. If I could change one thing about me it would be to say “no” more often.
9. My favorite junk food is a bag of crinkle-cut potato chips and a whole container of sour cream French onion dip with an ice cold PBR.
10. If I wasn’t a restaurant operator, I’d love to be on tour with a rock band as the drummer.