Culinary Director of the East Coast

Brendan Dougherty

My name is Brendan Dougherty, and I’m the Culinary Director of the East Coast.

I live in North Coventry, Pennsylvania.

My favorite thing about being a chef is creating a new dish that comes together perfectly, or getting to teach others new culinary techniques.

I always hated dicing onions the traditional way of cutting in half, then scoring the front and top to the desired thickness. Eventually, I saw a cook cutting them in half from top to bottom, then put the one half down on its cut side to slicing lengthwise for the desired thickness, then flipping the onion back onto the side you removed the stem from, and chopping it to dice. Sometimes you get so rooted in traditions of how something should be that you don't explore other options of how to get a job done faster or better, and you never know who you are going to learn something from!

My favorite pasta is tied between orecchiette, cavatelli, or trophy.

I would eat strawberry shortcake with homemade biscuits and whipped cream if I could only have one dessert for the rest of my life.

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Every once in a while, I will buy a 6oz block of duck liver pate with truffle and a baguette… then eat the whole thing!

Eggs. I don't think we do enough with eggs across all meal parts.  They are great at lunch or dinner but we as Americans tend to only view them as a breakfast food.

I couldn’t live without my chef knife and a small offset spatula.

I spend my off-hours reading cookbooks and checking up on what's going on in the industry.  My daughter is starting to take a liking to baking, so we try to incorporate something once a week centered around baking and letting her help.

Working across geographies has been the highlight of my career. I love to meet new people and work with them/learn from them, hopefully, they learn something from me. It’s all about sharing ideas. Also, enjoy trying new restaurants in different cities.

I wanted to be a photographer for National Geographic Magazine when I was a kid.

My first food memory is going to Frogs Legs at a restaurant in San Antonio, Texas that also housed a rodeo inside of it, along with line dancing!