Chef Bert Agor Jr. is on a Mission to Share Aloha and offer Ohana.
To be a great chef you need to have a passion for what you are doing because your food tells your story. The food of a chef without passion is that of an out of tune guitar. Chef Bert Agor Jr. has more passion and Aloha spirit then any other Chef I have personally ever met. Chef Bert and I go back 15 years or so. We have been on many culinary journeys together and I have come to know Bert as a great friend.
Chef Bert was recently recognized as the Big Splash Award recipient for his work with Dog Haus and No Kid Hungry. His Karaage Kid sandwich Helped secure the Nation’s Restaurant News Menu Trendsetter award. Bert was also Awarded Chef of The Year in 2016-2017 by Southern California Restaurant Writers Association.
Ask Bert what his Big Dreams are and he’ll tell you “Share the love through food,friendship,cultivating food,sharing my talents with ohana and the next generation, and eating a healthy diet. Fulfillment of this is my dream”CHEF Bert Agor Jr.
I asked Chef Bert who influenced him the most as a Chef and his response was his Father. Bert is a 3rd generation chef that has been influenced by the lessons of his father. “Love, patience, and a good meal speak volumes through circumstance” its the motto that was ingrained in Bert by his father.
Every Chef has a wild story or 10 thousand throughout their career. Early in Bert’s career he and some friends live off the land in his native Hawaii for a month. With only olive oil , sea salt, and black pepper. Bert would hunt and forage for his meals. The dishes they made were not complex but he learned to let the flavor of the land and aloha be the star.
Chef Bert looks to the future and what Culinary trends are on the horizon. ” People are starting to be more focused on clean food. They are growing tired of the processed and gmo rich diet that has greatly increased the last 25 years. People want to know where the food comes from”. Like all Chefs working today integrating more natural foods, grains, plant based options needs to be a big focus moving forward.
*Chef Bert singles out Hawaiian Sea Salt, Fresh Cracked Pepper, Olive Oil , Garlic, and Assorted Mushroom Varieties as his choice ingredients.
* A cast iron skillet, wood block cutting board, and Black Steel Knife are his favorite tools.
Travis Kamiyama is a Sushi Jedi!
Travis started his journey at 14 when he was persuaded to follow the ways of Atsushi, a cool Sushi chef that was the essence of coolness. Travis learned the craft and was influenced by some great Chef’s along the way. One Chef that made a big impression on Travis and his journey was Chef Taka. Taka was not a celebrity chef but to Travis and his journey he was inspiring. Taka was extremely skilled and so humble that he willingly shared his abundance of knowledge. There are many Chefs that hold back their secrets of the craft, not Taka. He saw the value in molding the next generation and passing the mastery to others. This quality is something Travis practices today with Chefs he mentors.
I met Travis probably over 10 years ago as he brought his brand into the restaurant I was working at. Travis is someone I admire and his passion and work ethic are on another stratosphere. Over the years I have followed Travis journey as he built a Sushi Brand on Royal Caribbean, Sandals and Market Broiler. Travis has branched out on other ventures as well. Travis is driven Culinary artist that educates and tells stories. Travis does not let the hurdles of the industry slow him down. He just sees the opportunity to innovate. Currently Travis is working on a Temaki Nori Wrap to change the game with Sushi hand roll kits.
Travis 5 favorite ingredients
1) Blue Fin Tuna. 2) Japanese premium nori seaweed. 3) Horv wasabi root. 4) Hokkado Scallops. 5) Bean Sprouts
Travis guilty pleasure food
Premium short grain rice cooked to perfection with filtered water in an induction rice cooker.