Location: Brooklyn, NY Restaurant: Reynard at Wythe Hotel Position: Executive Chef Cuisine focus: Simple, seasoned, and seasonal Notable Awards: Twice nominated for Best Chef NYC by James Beard Foundation
Sean Rembold, Executive Chef of several of Brooklyn’s most notable restaurants – including Diner, Marlow & Sons, and Reynard, each owned by acclaimed restaurateur Andrew Tarlow – has been cooking professionally for 20 years. Sean’s unique take on American classics with local and seasonal ingredients have helped make Williamsburg a culinary destination not only in New York City, but also on a national level. His hard work has earned him two James Beard Award nominations for Best Chef: New York City. Originally a Kentucky native, Sean moved to New York City to attend the French Culinary Institute. After cooking in the kitchens of Campagna, Osteria del Circo, and Bayard’s, Sean found his personal and professional fit in Williamsburg, the neighborhood he has called home since 1999. He lives there with his wife, designer Caron Callahan, and their daughter.
1. What’s your regular comfort meal?
I very much enjoy an egg sandwich. Finding a spot with delicious chicken wings and a good college football or basketball game on is also a luxury.
2. Tell us about one Kitchen Disaster story.
Many years ago I was a sous chef in a hotel and as I was leaving, an overnight porter came to me covering his eye in panic. He had been trying to pull five gallon plastic containers apart and the wire handle had sprung up and caught the inside of his eyelid. Spending the evening with him at Bellevue was an adventure all its own, but luckily there was no permanent damage and he returned to work a few weeks later.
3. Do you have any kitchen battle scars?
Several times throughout my career, I’ve “branded” myself for making mistakes in order to remember and not repeat them. Generally this has been done by holding a dupe spindle in hot oil and then laying it on my forearm.
4. If you’re last day was tomorrow, what would be your last meal?
A beer and a brat with a ripe nectarine for dessert would be alright with me. Or pizza.
5. What is and who makes your favorite knife?
Forschner 10.25″ serrated
6. Finish this sentence:
If I wasn’t a Chef, I would be a teacher and or coach because I enjoy working as a team to accomplish goals by helping one another.
7. After a long work day, what do you do to decompress?
I enjoy catching up with my wife and discussing our work day and what our daughter did or said that day. Sounds cliche but being able to laugh together at the end of the day erases almost any stress work might throw your way.
8. What do you wish you had more time to do?
Doing more sitting on a porch in the Catskills, having an afternoon beer with my wife and watching our daughter play with earthworms.
9. Besides cooking, do you have any other talents?
Me + karaoke + Bell Biv Devoe (any song from the album Poison) = Talent
10. What is your culinary “best case” scenario?
Having customers come back to the kitchen and tell us the meal they just had was the best in some time or even ever. No food review or award can come close to achieving such recognition as a team.
Learn more about Chef Sean Rembold on his Chef’s Roll profile here. Chef Sean Rembold will be participating in Puerto Rico Meets NYC in October 2015. Learn more about the event by clicking the image below.