One day I sat on the couch contemplating our lives, I was about to head off to one of my last few shifts at Bob’s waterfront disaster, and our nine month adventure in San Francisco would be coming to an end. I loved the city and all of its characters…


A Chef Reconsiders

Sometimes, on a dull-feeling day, maybe when I don’t have to be into the restaurant until later than usual, I start to ruminate over the good, the bad, and the unresolved feelings I have after 30 years as a chef. In moments like these, I begin to…


The Great Stupa of Dharmakaya

Despite growing up with parents who were devoted members of Chögyam Trungpa’s Buddhist community in Boulder, I was never pressured to follow or even explore Buddhist teachers or leaders, and never found the call within myself to seek out a more formal relationship to the tradition. Sure, I was exposed…


It was Friday, March 13th, 2020, and I was about to leave the restaurant I’ve been the Executive Chef at for the last five years and head to LA for a three-day weekend. This was a trip I’d been excited about for some time, to see a friend that I…


Use the force, I heard in the back of my head. It was 4:30 in the morning on a day more than twenty years ago, and I had just walked/stumbled into my little one-room apartment and collapsed onto the bed. Tomorrow was going to be rough. I had a 7am…


As a young Sous Chef, Valentine’s Day presented me with the first big challenge of my career. When I created my first Valentine’s Day menu, our Executive Chef was out for the entire month of February, recovering from foot surgery, and I was tasked with creating our V-Day specials. I’d…


Fire Kissed Flank Sizzles

Spicy Hips Move in Time… Heat

Hearts Throb all Night Long

Even months before the pandemic hit, I was searching for another creative outlet. I was a little burnt-out on food, as happens from time to time. Food is an art to me and sometimes I’m…


It’s a dull-feeling day. I don’t have to be into the restaurant until 2, which throws me off a little. I’m usually there by 9am, at the latest. Lying in bed until almost 10, I don’t feel much enthusiasm… for anything. Business is slow, both because it’s January and because…


Thinking back on the last thirty-plus years of my life in the restaurant business I can’t help but wonder: did I take the easy way out, or the hard way forward? I started bussing tables and washing dishes when I was sixteen because the service industry provided cash flow that…


After high school I moved to Burlington, Vermont and landed a line cook job at a little bar-and-grill downtown, called Reuban James. The kitchen manager was a rotund hippy who wore tie dyes, smoked a lot of weed. and when he wasn’t in the kitchen had a side arm strapped…

Chef Paolo Neville

Executive Chef and author with 30 + years in the service industry. I have two amazing sons and a passion for food and the restaurant industry.

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