On this week's episode of "What's Eric Eating," chef Kevin Naderi joins CultureMap food editor Eric Sandler to discuss his Montrose restaurant Roost, which celebrates its sixth anniversary this month. The chef begins the conversation by discussing his progress as a cook prior to opening Roost at age 25.
In addition to his restaurant, Naderi also discusses his experience as a competitor on reality TV show Beat Bobby Flay, the reason he doesn't allow people with dogs to rent the apartments he owns, and the possibility of opening another new concept. To his credit, Naderi gets real about the reasons he thinks Lilo & Ella, his Asian-inspired restaurant in Lazybrook/Timbergrove, closed after just over a year in business.
"It was great. We started off as this promising (concept), this vision that I had," Naderi says. "I take full blame for that. I didn't properly staff the place. I didn't have a chef when I wasn't there. I didn't spend the time to train a GM right...Really learned my lesson on any future endeavor to staff properly. Bring in a chef. Bring in a GM. Bring in anyone you can to watch things when you're not there."
Prior to Naderi joining the show, Tyler Horne, the farmers market manager for local non-profit Urban Harvest, joins Sandler to discuss the news of the week. They break down the recent closings of Peska and Lowbrow, discuss the plans to transform Benjy's on Washington into a diner called The Classic - All Day, and Dallas-based restaurant East Hampton Sandwich Co.'s Houston expansion plans.
In the restaurants of the week segment, Sandler and Horne describe their meal at Spicy Girl, a recently opened Sichuan restaurant in Midtown. Sandler also shares his first impressions of Nancy's Hustle, the newly opened neighborhood restaurant in EaDo.