|Chef Jason Ellis and Sakina Anderson at the relaunch of Buckhead Bottle Bar & Bistro|
Tell us about the new menu at Buckhead Bottle Bar & Bistro.
Ellis: I would describe the menu as eclectic, not going in any one direction to make really good food. I'm just making good food. Not reinventing the wheel, just coming at it from a different angle. For example, instead of just regular shrimp & grits, I made a goat cheese & chive polenta with seared shrimp and scallops under a lobster cream sauce.
As Executive Chef, will you actually be in the kitchen preparing the food on a nightly basis or will your new found celebrity status keep you away?
Ellis: For now, yes, I will be here. As time goes on, my Executive Sous Chef, Mark Phillips, will be here holding things down which will allow me to do some other things I have going on like the Social Cravings events.
Since you brought up Social Cravings, when are you gonna do it again?
Ellis: Hopefully by the end of this month. My camp is working hard to get the next one going soon. I love the Atlanta public for coming out to support it! It was an idea that my business partner Jay Chris had and once I saw his vision, we just went for it. This is what I do and I wanna have fun with it. I thank God for it.
As a Celebrity Chef, our readers wanna know, do you have groupies? I mean, there's nothing sexier than a man that can cook.
Ellis: Yes, I do, but I'm a married man. My wife is actually here tonight. But honestly, from day one, my wife has always said she knows I'm coming home to her and has never been an insecure woman. I'm around beautiful women all the time but she's very confident. To be even more honest, I've actually replaced the art of chasing women with chasing money. So, she has nothing to worry about. She already knew that though.
Do you have any chef beefs? Like, is there another chef who gets under your skin?
Ellis: I really don't have any problems with other chefs. A lot of the top chefs are my friends. What gets under my skin is the so called "competition" between chefs, which I don't really have, but a few (other chefs) have made comments. I don't pay it any attention because if you stay focused on what you're doing, all the goodness will come to you. I don't have to make a lot of noise, my food speaks for itself. These young chefs trying to go out and make a lot of noise sound funny to me. Concentrate on your food is my advice. Do you and everything else will come. You wouldn't come out as a young rapper and try to take out Jay-Z, would you? It's not gonna work.
Speaking of Jay-Z, who does Chef listen to? What rappers or singers get you in your zone?
Ellis: I like Jay-Z. I love T.I.. I love Jeezy. At the same time, Goapele sings one of my favorite songs. Who else? I like Wale, Rick Ross. I even like The Game. Whatever mood I'm in, it all motivates me.
Special thanks to Executive Chef, Jason Ellis, Executive Sous Chef, Mark Phillips, Event Manager, Jessica Collazo and the entire staff of Buckhead Bottle Bar & Bistro for their hospitality. Also, and extra special thanks to our friend Diddy for setting everything up for us.
Visit Buckhead Bottle Bar & Bistro
268 East Paces Ferry Road NE Atlanta, GA 30305.