Last month Commons Club completed its open-kitchen renovation, with Executive Chef Moosah Reaume debuting a bold and eclectic dinner menu with reinvented takes on contemporary American dishes. So naturally, when we heard that chef, rapper, and now author Action Bronson was visiting Chicago to promote his new cookbook “F*ck, That’s Delicious: An Annotated Guide to Eating Well”, we knew we had to sit down with him to discuss all things culinary.
It was 10 AM on a Friday when Action sat down with Hillary Sawchuk of A Drink With, about 30 of his biggest fans, and Chef Moosah to talk food, dating, and his grandmother (awww).
ADW: Cheers to your new cookbook “F*ck, That’s Delicious: An Annotated Guide to Eating Well.”
AB: Cheers. Make sure everyone looks each other in the eye. Just look around, hold your glass up and look each other in the eye. What time is it? Ten? We’re f*cking drinking wine. I love this.
ADWI need to be brought up to speed on this natural wine.
AB: It traveled well…
ADW: Your publicist requested the Susucaru by Frank Cornelissen and we tried to overnight it from New Jersey, but then we found two bottles in Chicago.
AB: Who? My publicist requested it? I requested it! That’s my request. I love it. It’s a beautiful thing. This is some incredible wine made by a very crazy Danish man that lives in Sicily. He has this incredible vineyard and all of these grapes grow on the side of the volcano. You can literally taste the rock in every sip and in every sip you just smell volcano. He does another bottle called Magma, which is universally thought of as one of the best wines period, not just natural. It’s all about being natural. I’m natural today. I’m not wearing my bra.ADW: What has been the most memorable meal because of the person you were with?
AB: Well, just recently I was with my friend Clovis [Ochin] in Paris and he’s the person who turned me onto the natural wine. He’s like a f*ckin’ tornado of food, wine and hash in Paris, so it’s pretty amazing for me. It’s a phenomenal thing. We spent two weeks just eating and traveling the countryside and drinking everything in sight. Salamis, cheeses… coming across all different types of people like winemakers, cheesemakers, and everyone has a story. The lady who makes the wine has one arm; the man who makes the honey limps through the field. You know what I mean? There is a story that really drives everything home. Probably the most memorable thing I’ve had in a long time is this f*cking fish [called] turbot … I had it made at this restaurant, Septime, in Paris by chef Bertrand Grébaut. My man used to write graffiti, f*cking smoked dust; that’s what gave him these ideas. The entire fish was a la plancha with beautiful herbs from the countryside and slathered with the best butter that has ever been made. Everything is just the best quality. I’m kicking my feet. I got the fish drunk a little bit before. They have little green caviar. They’re little baby peas that come around in the summer and spring that are mixed with black, beautiful caviar and butter beurre blanc and elderflower. It was crazy. That’s memorable. You can tell from my passion. I am speaking from my diaphragm.ADW:Is there a food you’ll never eat again?
AB: I don’t like mackerel. I don’t like cooked mussels.
ADW: You’re a culinary artist, rapper, chef, food personality and author. What do you want your legacy to be?
AB: I don’t think about that. I just do. I just try and create beautiful things and then we’ll see what happens. I live in the moment.
ADW: What was the hardest part about creating a cookbook? Or was it just fun and easy?
AB: It was fun and easy. There wasn’t anything difficult. I was just juggling a lot doing an album and doing television. I work better when there are a lot of things going on. I just feel good. I read the horoscope for Sagittarius… it told me I’m at my most creative from September to March.
ADW: Well, here we go!
AB: Let’s get it.ADW:Must-visit Chicago restaurant?
ADW: What were you like as a kid?
AB: This! With big curly hair and fatter cheeks.ADW: Were there signs that pointed to a career in music or food?
AB: There were signs that were pointing in a lot of different directions. Psychologically, physically, all kinds of different directions, but yes, I was fat, I liked to eat food all of the time. I would always ask for food to be made for me. My grandmother would make food for everybody, but no, that wasn’t good enough for me. I would need something made separately just for me. I was a spoiled little f*ck. I’m an only child. It’s true.
ADW: And you dedicated your cookbook to your grandmother. What’s your favorite quality about her that you take with you every day?
AB: I did. I love her. She’s just nurturing, caring and loving… just knowledgeable and everything you’d want in a grandmother, literally every good quality that a grandmother could possibly have. I know everyone says their grandmothers are always the best cooks and chefs and this and that… my grandmother could f*cking knit a very fine piece of lace doily to cover this entire table in one day and find time to make bread three times, three different meals. She was on some next-level sh*t. She’d make little f*cking booties for the kids around, like for nieces and nephews. I always had a furry wool sweater that she knit me. Imagine me in a little red knit sweater, curly hair.
ADW: When you look at your career thus far, what do you consider big breaks along the way that took you to the next level?
AB: When I went on tour with Eminem… my manager Paul [Rosenberg] brought me on tour with Em when he was touring Australia, New Zealand and South Africa. I feel like that was a turning point because on that trip is really where I created “F*ck, That’s Delicious.” My boy and longtime friend, Tom Gould, was my videographer – he’s a New Zealand boy – and on that trip is where we created the magic that I try to emulate now and create again.ADW: You also have a dating show on Snapchat called “Hungry Hearts with Action Bronson.” What makes a good date?
AB: An interesting date… you get into an argument maybe, there has to be some sort of drama. It’s like joy and pain… and this is with a woman I love very dearly, so our dates are a bit different now. There has to be an argument, there has to be reconciliation, it’s just the way it goes.
ADW: Do you believe in kissing on the first date?
AB: I believe in kissing at any time. Period. You just have to express yourself.
ADW: What do you look for in a partner?
AB: I have to be touched. It’s like a piece of art when you see something. It hits your eyes but it’s the soul that you’re looking at. You’re not just looking at the outer beauty. You’re looking at the soul. You’re looking deep within. Little things matter, big things matter… it’s an overall vibe.ADW: Who is the last person you texted?
AB: I think my baby. My baby girl.
ADW: For those trying to follow their dreams, what advice do you have?
AB: You gotta just push through it. That’s just a basic b*tch answer. That’s general. You gotta just push through it. You just have to find it within yourself. You have to hit rock bottom to be able to never want to go back there again.
ADW: In a recent article you said that you’ve shown that you can come from anywhere and still have an appreciation for anything. What makes you feel that way?
AB: That’s true. Yeah, I said that about what I told [Mario] Batali. I feel like people surprise you. What they know, what they’ve been through, what they’ve seen and what they can be with just a little bit of help or just a little bit of motivation, like a little bit of self-drive. It’s crazy because I was a f*ck. I didn’t follow through with anything really. I was just bullsh*tting through life and then something just clicked for me.ADW: If you could have a drink with anyone, who would it be?
AB: Rodney Dangerfield in West Palm Beach, Florida on the shuffleboard court. Yeah, that’s what I’m into… a couple of brewskis.
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