ONE-ON-ONE: Brendan from Bourbon Blue

Nov 02, 2015 0 comments
ONE-ON-ONE: Brendan from Bourbon Blue

Get ready to dig into our One-On-One interview with Brendan McGrew, the owner and head chef at Bourbon Blue! We were able to sit down and get to know him on a more personal level.  Sit back, read and relate!

In Manayunk Magazine, we saw that your college major was Criminal Justice. Did you see yourself going into that field originally?

"I 100% saw myself going into that line of work," said Brendan with assurance. "I really enjoyed the courses, and the social interaction involved in the course work." Brendan went on to explain that around his junior year he did not have any specified specialty, but that he thinks he would have figured it out post-graduation. It's a good thing he didn't take that route because our taste buds would be lost without Brendan and Bourbon Blue.

If you could only eat one meal for the rest of your life, what would it be?

 "Are we talking courses, or one plate? ..two plates?" asked Brendan. After deciding upon a single-plate answer, Brendan divulged into delicious details. "It would be a turkey club. Thickly cut, extra crispy bacon, homemade mayo, lettuce, tomato, on fresh sourdough bread." He also added that his turkey club wouldn't be complete without "kettle cooked potato chips, a pickle on the side, and a root beer."

Were you the type of child who ate his veggies?

 "Yes. I was part of the clean-plate club for every meal." Brendan explained that this was the policy in his household, regardless of what was on his plate.

Do you have a favorite piece of kitchen equipment, or gadget?

 "It's a tie between the crème brulee torch, and the immersion blender. For different reasons," laughed Brendan.

If you could have your own cooking show, who would be your celebrity guest?

After deciding that he could chose two celebrity guests, one being a foodie, the other being a Hollywood celebrity, Brendan was able to narrow it down. "For the food-related celebrity, I would pick Thomas Keller. For the other celebrity, I would have to go with Vince Vaughn."

If you could have dinner with one person, living or deceased, real or imaginary, famous or not, who would you choose and where would you go?

Without flinching Brendan gave us a heartfelt response. "My grandfather. I would eat with him here, at Bourbon Blue. He passed away before we opened and he never saw everything we were able to do."

Is there any food that you really dislike?

Brendan wasn't able to pick a certain type of cuisine, which may or may not stem from being a VIP member of the 'clean-plate club' growing up. "I really dislike pretentious over complicated food."

Which is your favorite: breakfast, lunch, or dinner?

Given his inconsistent and, at times, crazy work schedule, Brendan's hours do not really allot for a differentiation between meals and meal times. "Sometimes, it'll be 3 in the morning and I'll be eating waffles. I have non-traditional work hours, so a lot of the time I'll have dinner for breakfast or breakfast for dinner," explained Brendan.

What was the craziest meal you've ever had?

Without pause Brendan responded, "The French Laundry in Napa Valley, California. Melissa and I, along with our two friends, flew out to California for two days. I mean, the entire trip revolved around this reservation.  It was incredible," gushed Brendan.

If you won the lottery, what would you do with your new winnings?

After deciding on a number, 93 million, Brendan did the math. "Okay so 93 million, post taxes, let's say roughly 46 million dollars. I would first and foremost, pay off all of my debt." He went on to describe the two months of "fun time" that he would allot for himself and his loved ones and friends. "I believe that life is all about experiences, not materialistic wealth. I would spend my money on food, friends, and experiences."

Whether he's in the kitchen at Bourbon Blue, or answering questions for our One-on-One interview, Brendan gives it his all. If this little preview has you thinking about good food and experiences you may have missed out on in life, think no more. Visit Brendan and stop by Bourbon Blue today!

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