Yesterday afternoon, Martha sat down with chef David Chang on her radio special, "At Martha's Table." Martha called him a "national treasure" and gushed about his amazing culinary creations (Steamed pork buns! Momofuku ramen!). David struck me as a very candid and down-to-earth dude. He's definitely not a celebrity chef diva, which is refreshing!
Here I am, looking ridiculously happy next to David.
1. David barely graduated from Trinity College in Hartford, CT. "I graduated very low in my class, at the bottom. My degree is pretty useless," he admitted.
2. "I felt so late in the game. I felt so behind," said David about enrolling at
the French Culinary Institute, at the age of 22. He's pretty hard on himself, right? You can listen to David talk about this in the clip below.
3. David used to answer phones at Mercer Kitchen and Craft restaurants. At Craft, Tom Colicchio became a mentor of sorts. This was pre-Top Chef fame.
4. He's single. (And yes, Martha asked if he was married and when he said no, she went in for the kill and asked about his GF situation). Listen below to Martha grill David on his love life!
5. He doesn't own a car.
6. He moved to Tokyo for awhile. At one point, he lived in a men's shelter and cooked for free just to get culinary experience in Japan!
7. David tried to get many investors interested in his first noodle shop but no one put the money down. Eventually David's father gave him money to open his first restaurant.
8. David loves to order Chinese take out from Grand Sichuan (they have various locations in NYC). "I almost never cook at home. It's easier in New York City to order in than to cook at home," he said. You can listen to David talking about why he doesn't cook at home in the clip below.
10. Chef Chang's advice to aspiring chefs? "Don't be afraid to make a mistake," he said. He told Martha that his famed pork buns came from an accident and he didn't think it would be a crowd favorite!
Momofuku Milk Bar's blueberry cream cookies from the event. These were some of the best cookies I ever ate!