FOODIES WEST.COM         

 EXECUTIVE CHEF JOSHUA MURRAY


AMERICAN CULINARY FEDERATION COMPETITION: GOLD, SILVER & BRONZE MEDALS

MARRIOTT MARQUIS CHICAGO

Every time I go somewhere new, it's not just about the history of the food.
It's about the history of the culture of the place. 


September 2017 Issue | Vol. 5, No. 14 


















 










 
 
 
 


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Executive Chef
MOUNTAIN SHADOWS
 PARADISE VALLEY, ARIZONA

CHARLES WILEY

Executive Chef 
FOUR SEASONS SCOTTSDALE
CHUCK KAZMER

  Executive Chef
JW MARRIOTT PHOENIX
DESERT RIDGE

RYAN LAMKIN

  Manager/Mixologist
MERITAGE an Urban Tavern
JW MARRIOTT PHOENIX DESERT RIDGE

TRAVIS PARSLEY


Chef Murray shared how he developed his palate on our —


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M.F.K. FISHER
Food writer extraordinaire

     
MERITAGE
An Urban Tavern
with Chef de Cuisine Phillip Keppler
JW MARRIOTT DESERT RIDGE
Phoenix, Arizona

      
Montelobos Mezcal
with Iván Saldaña, PhD.

     
VIVA XXXII Tequila
Democratizing Luxury


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Joshua Murray | Executive Chef | Chicago Marriott Marquis The year 2015 might not have ranked high on the event scale for some people, but in Phoenix, Arizona, things were looking up. Phoenicians approved their ten-year General Plan steering the city to become “more connected” and “be like no other city in the world”. Part of the plan included the familiar task to “create an even more vibrant downtown”. That meant luring more vibrant people, yes? “I got an email from the old director of ops [Jacob Wright] here,” Joshua Murray started the story of how he decided to take his last position at Renaissance Phoenix Downtown, where this interview took place. “I looked at the job on line, and I looked at the hotel. I just didn’t know if I could go from where I was to this hotel, from a culinary passion standpoint.” Murray had spent over a year in Sonoma, a place he described as “purely about food and beverage” and one, he said, changed him “forever”. “A lot of times it’s wine,” Murray said about Sonoma, “but the food scene is unbelievable. The competition is absolutely fierce. You can’t go there and BS your way through anything when it comes to food. The level of education that your diners and consumers have up there is through the roof. It’s unbelievable. “Just because of the pressure cooker environment of having to perform in a place like that,” Murray added, “the all-encompassing nature of it caused me to round myself out in a way that I don’t know of anywhere else in the country that would cause me to do that. The craft beer, the cheese, the creameries, the olive oil. Everything that you could want there is the best version of everything. You’re just like, If I just love and treat this with respect, I can do so many great things. It grounds you. It humbles you. You know you’re just a guy on the block, and to be the best guy on the block takes a lot more than what it does in other places of the country. For the world, for that matter.” Murray, grounded, humbled, and in need of a change, went to the interview. “After the interview process,” Murray said, “I walked out not knowing whether this was a place I wanted to go.” That’s because Murray has two speeds: All or Nothing. This he learned from his dad.