FOODIES WEST.COM         
CHEF DE CUISINE DANIEL WAKED
THE ARTHUR J | MANHATTAN BEACH,  CALIFORNIA
As crazy as the restaurant industry and business can be,
September 2016 Issue | Vol. 4, No. 16                                                          I feel very at peace in this chaos.

 
 
 
 

Executive Chef
CHAMINADE RESORT
SANTA CRUZ, CA

NICHOLAS CHURCH

4-Diamond Chef de Cuisine
  DESEO | WESTIN KIERLAND
SCOTTSDALE, AZ

DEREK BIAZO

      
Lead Sommelier
RITZ-CARLTON
HALF MOON BAY CA

TODD BRINKMAN


View the wines, spirits, and beers chefs and sommeliers have paired with food featured in FOODIES WEST on our new page:


Chef Danny Waked talks about a star-struck moment when he worked at a steakhouse in Caesar's Palace. Read about it on our
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Autumn Cheese Pairings:
1st in a triptych

     
deseo restaurant
AT WESTIN KIERLAND
SCOTTSDALE, AZ


     
Pacific Resources Int'l
New Zealand Sea Salts
Manuka Honey

      
Ancho Reyes Verde
Roasted Poblano Chiles


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Daniel Waked | Chef de Cuisine | The Arthur J | Manhattan Beach, California A great-grandmother, Danny Waked said, “is a great thing to have.” Waked’s Colombian bisabuela spent her whole day watching and caring for him while his mom went to work. “So I spent a lot of time with my great grandmother,” Waked said, “cooking.” And since his great-grandfather was Lebanese, his great-grandmother made Lebanese dishes as well as many rustic Columbian dishes. “For me,” Waked said, “today, they’re like some of the most satisfying things. From braised oxtail to various kinds of stews and rices that we grew up eating. It’s so soul-satisfying.” Waked might have learned how to cook up some great food, but he never considered cooking as a career. Other people had to tell him. Like his friends. “So in high school,” Waked relayed the process, “you know how high school kids are. You run around with groups of your friends, and they would all come over to my place, because my mom would be at work at the grocery store—she was a checker for 20-odd years for Von’s and Safeway—and she would always have the refrigerator stockpiled with food. So it’s like, Let’s go see if Danny’s home, and have him cook for us. By this time, it was just Waked and his brother growing up at mom’s house. And she always, to this day, had the refrigerator stocked. So Waked’s friends would come over, and he’d always cook. “Like, Come on in, man, get something to eat,” Waked described the scene. “Or I’d be running around skateboarding, because I did a lot of skateboarding during that time in high school. And so they told me. You know, you really should cook. This is great. You’re so natural at it.” Waked dismissed the idea with a, Yeah. Right. Then he and his brother would go right back to watching all the cooking shows running at the time on PBS. Then they’d call mom. “My brother and I would call and say, Mom, I need you to pick up Cornish hens, and I need you to pick up this, this, and this,” Waked said. “And she would come home, and she was unwinding at the end of her day, and my brother and I would make food for her.” The turning point that made Waked decide to cook came when he figured out he was unhappy in his chosen field.