Currently a student in AB Tech’s Culinary program, Jason Gray is working towards his dream of becoming a chef!
How long have you worked for Corner Kitchen & what is your current role?
I started at Corner Kitchen at the end of August 2022. Prior to that I interned at our sister restaurant Chestnut, from April through mid-August. My current position is brunch line cook, focusing primarily on cold-side.
What is your favorite meal you’ve had at Corner Kitchen?
I believe the best meal I had was the steak and lobster dish! Everything was cooked to perfection! I’m also a big fan of the Biltmore Reuben.
What got you started as a chef?
I’ve enjoyed cooking for a long time. But the turning point of deciding to make a career change occurred when I made my first cake from scratch in early 2019. The cake tasted great, but didn’t have the finished look I wanted. So, I continued to perfect my skills and eventually started baking cakes for friends and family.
What are your career goals after culinary school?
This is a tough one. First, I would love to own my own restaurant one day. Something that would allow me to create both sweet and savory dishes, and that would allow me to have personal interaction with the guests that I serve. I think I would also like to return to A-B Tech at some point down the road as Director of Culinary Arts and Hospitality programs. The current director, Chef Cathy Horton, has had a big impact on my future culinary career even before I started the program. I would love to follow in her footsteps one day and provide the same type of guidance to other future chefs.
What is one of your passions outside of work?
Right now one of my biggest passions is finding great trails to hike in the surrounding area. I really love the natural beauty of the mountains.
Where in town would you recommend folks visit?
One of my favorite places to go is the area around the River Arts District. I will often park on the end close to White Duck Taco and walk along the river to the park off Amboy. It’s a great walk with points in between to stop and relax or get some great food and beverages.
If you could travel anywhere in the world for a food experience, where would you go and what would you like to try?
There are so many places! I love the flavors from India and the Middle East. But I think France would be at the top of my list. Afterall, most of what I’m learning is based on classical French cuisine. Beyond that reason, so much of French food is presented in a very elegant fashion. I want to create dishes that wow people in both flavor and appearance. And I’d want to try everything! Especially the desserts!