1. One thing you don’t know about me is that I really love low-brow food like McDonald’s, Popeyes, Kraft Mac & Cheese and Ruffles potato chips with Philadelphia Cream Cheese and cheddar cheese, dipped in green olive brine.
2. If I could trade places with one chef it would be Daniel Patterson. I would eventually love to be on that level, to be respected as a thinker about food and as a writer, and to be acting on grand ideas for the industry and for the world.
3. If there was no country ham, I’d have no reason to live. It’s a uniquely American product that’s funky, salty and smoky. We don’t always serve ham, but it finds its way into so many different menu items as a flavoring.
4. My go-to drink is a Manhattan.
5. If I were on death row my last meal would be roasted chicken with gravy.
6. My favorite junk food is fried rice.
7. My most prized possessions are the vintage glassware and decanters we use at Lazy Bear to serve cocktails. We also have a large number of vintage decorative tchotchkes that have taken years to amass. They all evoke the adventurous American period of the mid to late 20th century.
8. If I wasn’t a restaurant operator, I’d love to be a film director.
9. If I could have a meal with anyone living or dead, it would be with my parents.
10. I would make them something rustic and delicious.
David Barzelay is the chef/owner of Lazy Bear, which he launched as an underground San Francisco restaurant in 2009 and eventually developed into a brick-and-mortar restaurant. He was recently named a Food & Wine Best New Chef. Lazy Bear, which is an anagram of Barzelay’s name, is a ticketed restaurant, requiring customers to buy tickets ($145 to $175) in advance.