One restaurant offers a variety of burgers ground daily, the other offers Italian cuisine made from scratch. Both have taken over the 11,000 square feet adjacent to the Food Court on Level 3, South.
There are so many traits that exemplify Chefs in the restaurant business; passionate, hardworking, talented, driven. Executive Chef Dave Schultz inherits all of these, and has been in the restaurant business for nine years in which he has only just scratched the surface of his talents. The last seven of those have involved working with CRAVE Restaurant and Kaskaid Hospitality, in which he has risen through the ranks at warp speed. That brings him to current day, where is he now the Executive Chef at Burger Burger. I was fortunate enough to sit down with him to get his take on what the new concepts will bring to the Mall.
Q: Where does your culinary interest stem from?
A: I started cooking when I was young and loved playing with different flavors and food combinations as I learned to cook new things. I started cooking so I could eat what I wanted without having to depend on someone else to make it for me but in my teens I would cook for friends and family because I liked to share the food I loved with the people I loved.
Q: What is your #1 goal with your restaurants?
A: Simply to create a unique environment with outstanding food for our guests to create great memories. In doing so, I want to inspire others to return and tell others they should choose us for their next night out.
Q: What is your philosophy about food/cooking?
A: Like most things in life, you get out of it what you put into it. Take your time to learn and execute all details correctly and with integrity and the results will be great!
Q: What drew you into the Minneapolis food scene? What’s unique about it for you?
A: This area is home to an eclectic mix of people so we have the opportunity for exposure to an amazing mix of cuisine that rivals any city in United States. Minnesotans are adventurous people that don’t mind taking a chance and trying something new but at the same time we are not easily impressed and do not mistake quality with pretentiousness. As we develop food for this community we always have to keep value in mind and make sure our guests feel they are getting a good value for their dollar.
Q: What do you love most about the restaurant biz?
A: I love the opportunity to teach others and at the same time have the opportunity to learn from everyone in the kitchen. I think it is very important to remain open to what others have to teach you, from your superiors and peers all the way to the dishwashers. There are so many different ways to accomplish the same result which is to offer great food to our guests. Those ways constantly change and develop so you need to be open to improvement in every aspect.
Q: What makes working in the CRAVE kitchen different than any other kitchen you’ve worked in?
A: We have a unique structure that allows the opportunity for everyone to have a voice with ownership and upper management. We have a big operation but it is run like a family where we all matter and we all have the opportunity to contribute to major projects. It is a great feeling to know my voice is heard within this large company.