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By way of quick introduction, I’ll start my ChowGuys dispatches with a brief background on my personal and culinary history, hopefully giving you an idea of who I am and where I’m coming from.
Born and raised in Southeastern Virginia, I spent the majority of my adolescence in Virginia Beach before attending the College of William and Mary. In my high school years, my experience in the kitchen was minimal: I could set the table and clear the dishes, but I was otherwise useless when it came to helping out with family dinners.
When I got to college, I quickly realized that I’d need to learn how to cook for a variety of reasons. Aside from the health benefits of homemade meals, cooking would help me stay within my budget and would give me a break from the monotony (and insipidity) of dining hall fare. When I got my first apartment sophomore year, it was baby steps from there: grilled chicken with sautéed onions and peppers, baked salmon with sweet potatoes. I certainly wasn’t a blossoming Mario Batali, but it felt good to be able to make my own meals--especially ones that didn’t come in microwavable packaging.
After graduating college in May of 2011, I got a job in the music industry and moved to New York, where I currently live in the Lower East Side in Manhattan. It’s a vibrant neighborhood with an eclectic mix of people and cuisine, and my dispatches will often focus on sharing some of the great things that the LES has to offer, in addition to my continuing efforts in the kitchen.
Stay tuned- Ben