Wednesday, March 25, 2009

WTP! Help Wanted with Upcoming Wolfgang Puck Interview

I just found out I've been assigned to interview Wolfgang Puck for Of course, as Murphy's Law would have it (what's Austrian for Murphy?), this comes along while I'm traveling, with time and creativity being in shorter supply.

So, I was wondering if you help me out by submitting a question or two that I could use for the interview. Any and all serious ideas are appreciated. I need to submit between 10 and 15 questions to my editors ASAP.

Chef Puck's famous California pizza (pictured here) will be the topic of a few of the questions, but I need more. Thanks!

Photo (c) Flickr user pinhole(Mark)'s


Anonymous said...

Ask him what he makes at home (probably been asked a million times already)
Do his kids cook?
Luisa Vacaville

granny said...

How did he get hooked up with QVC or is it Home Shopping selling his brand cookware on TV? How does he manage his time to oversee his restaurants? Who was his inspiration to learn to cook? Last question, can he do a cooking video with you in the near future? Maybe make apple strudel?

k.w. said...

"Have you ever felt like you've lost the appreciation for casual types of food?"

"When did you first realize that you've wanted to become a chef?"

"Is there any downside of being internationally famous?"

Hope these help!

Anonymous said...

What is, in your mind.. the perfect pizza? (dough / toping)

Jennifer said...

Any flavor combinations pleasantly surprise you?

In your experiments, have there been any fantastic flops?

Chew Barnes said...

Mr Puck,

How do you ensure the quality of each of your restaurants (including Wolfgang "to-go's" found in grocery stores) are up to spec. Do you personally visit each and every establishment (including grocery stores) to guarantee the quality of food is on par with what you envisioned as a master chef?

-Chew Barnes, Burbank CA

PukaDog said...

How's the soup bidness?

What's your favorite comfort food?

Beyond great skill and passion for cooking great food, are there any other specific qualities you look for when hiring a new chef for one of your restaurants?

What do you find are the major differences between the American palette vs. the European palette?

Would you be willing to be the first celebrity chef to share a quick & easy American food video recipe with internet celebrity Chef John for Food Wishes?

Pam said...

Do you have a best cooking tip for home cooking foodies?

How many hours a day do you work and how many days are you able to spend at home?

What advice do you have for those who choose to go into the restaurant business?

Where and when did your career in food begin? How did you start your own restaurant? Did you have a financial backer or were you able to save money over the years?

Compare the importance of having excellent chef skills with the importance of having general business knowledge with regard to having a successful restaurant.

What are your favorite culinary weapons in the kitchen?

What do you like to eat when you are home?

Do you ever see yourself retired?

granny said...

Does he wear Mozo shoes? If he cooks with you on your blog would you give him a complimentary pair of Mozo shoes?

Anonymous said...


are you gonna create a CHOKALATE PIZZA.. cause we all know you love CHOKALATE

Susannah said...

Why has he had such staying power esp in hollywood where chefs and restaurants come and go faster than lottery winnings in a trailer park?
He has been around forever and I'd like to know how he handles the pressure of staying current and fresh and innovative with food. Does he hire people to develop new recipes or is he constantly trying to create his own new dishes much like a musician writing new songs? Also, if he knew there was a woman in NC who was his number 1 fan would he send her a deep dish pumpkin pie with cranberry marmalade even if it's not Thanksgiving?

foofifofum said...

Has he tried the no-knead method of making dough, and his opinion or tip making pizza dough for home use.

Basia said...

Is the popularity of all the cooking shows, schools, etc raising the bar for American cuisine? Or is it really more entertainment than education? (With the exception of Chef John, who manages both beautifully!)

Anonymous said...

How is your mother?
lol :P

Jesse said...

Deserted island spices/ingredients? (Musicians love to do this with albums. Maybe chefs could adopt/adapt it?)

~Jesse from Detroit

Carlos said...

Would you ever considering bringing your culinary talents and experience to a public school system? To revamp school food as it commonly known (bland, unexciting, little variety, and not to mention not very nutritious)? Better school lunches - with gourmet items and more tasteful fare - would benefit kids by helping their body and mind, thereby improving learning and academic success.

Anonymous said...

Murphy is Murphy in german.... but then its not Murphy's "law", but Murphys "Gesetz".

You could ask him, whether he thinks there are any differences between european's and american's appreciation of food.

Chris said...

Is Wolfgang Puck a diner or an eater?
Does the ideal gastronomy exist or is it the gastronomy of every one of us?
What is your fondest food memory as a child?
What is your food wish? (ha,ha)

Art Wanderlei said...

Chef John, here're a few:

> So Wolfgang, what's up with the name ?
> I've never heard of you, who are you ?
> Is Puck a real name ? It sounds kinda made up!

Glad I could help, I've got more from where that came from.

Anonymous said...

What's your favorite restaurant (after your own)?

What do you like to snack on when no one else is around because you don't want anyone to know?

Hygienist said...

What does he like to eat when HE goes to the restaurant?

Does he have any guilty pleasures when it comes to food? You know the stuff you wouldn't expect to see a famous chef eat but he loves anyway.

Anonymous said...

Chef John, I do not have a question, but I think you have the smartest most awesome tribe... what brilliant questions they have suggested for you. Have fun!

Anonymous said...

How did he become a chef? When did he get started? What are some of his favorite styles of food? How has his cooking style evolved?

Vince said...

Here's a question for Chef Puck:

Since you are a famous chef, are your friends and family reluctant to cook for you in fear that you might consider their cooking to be less sophisticated or flavorful than yours?

Susanna said...

Is there any food you won't eat or even try?
If you see patrons at your restaurants leave lots of food on the plate uneaten, do you get upset?

Stephanie said...

Hey that's cool. I work for his catering company in Vegas. Never met him though...

Maybe bring up about how he likes his restaurants to be as organic and natural as possible?

Chef John said...

Yes, Breeze, we have THE smartest, most knowledgeable foodies anywhere online! Thanks everyone!!

Keith said...

Have you seen the best food videos on the net? Food Wishes? If so, which is your favorite one?

Stefan said...

You could ask Chef Puck if he has any dishes that he has created which could be described as Austian-American fusion. What does he consider the hallmark dishes or techniques associated with Austria.

I would like to know...because I can only think of Wiener Schnitzel!!

Love you work Chef John!!

m33rak said...

Wow that's an honor to speak to Wolfgang Puck. Yeah Murphy's Law really sucks...

A few decent question would be:

Who cooks at the house?
What is your legacy?

Anonymous said...

You should ask him what inspired him to become a professional chef.


You could ask him his go to recipe for getting the ladies

Anonymous said...

Thanks Chef John for the opportunity to help you here.

Q: As a chef, what has been your biggest challenges when cooking, and what have been your biggest obsticles you feel you still have to work on?

Q: Looking back over your career and experiences, what has been a most special or anecdotal experience that really impressed you or on your cooking?

Q: what advice do you have for folks who cook and who constantly strive to be better in the kitchen and prepare food that others can appreciate and enjoy?

Q: Can you share a few of your most favorite recipes or meals?

Q: What is in the future plans for you as a chef and businessman?


Anonymous said...

You should challenge him to a pizza cooking throwdown. chef john style. and before the battle begins you should spit a freestyle verse

"This is chef john and I'm reppin the hood
Did you try my molten lava cake?
The hunnies said it's too good
Now I'm not trying to start a fire
With my no knead recipes
But when I cook I can see the desire
In yo mama's eyes, she said I was the best she ever seen."

amber said...

Ask him what the challenges are of being both a celebrity and a serious chef.


Chef John said...

thanks for the rhyme, but don't quit your day job. ;-)

Scott - Boston said...

Since I'm probably too late here to offer a question, I figured that I'd like to speak for all of your fans and say: I'd like to hear Chef John answer most of these questions.

(The questions about "What's it like having your own restaurant, etc." not-withstanding.)

Scott - Boston

Bill W, NH said...

Does he watch any of the chef/cooking reality shows like Ramsey's Kitchen Nightmares, Top Chef or the like and what does he think of them.

Anonymous said...

Hi Chef John,
Here are a few possible questions for Wolfgang Puck. Hope they help.

What was your initial inspiration for opening Spago Beverly Hills?

Do you feel that winning the James Beard Foundation Outstanding Service Award (Spago Beverly Hills) and 2 Michelin Stars has made a difference for you as a chef and restaurateur?

Le Bon Vivant said...

Whats your opinion on the new wave of chefs trying to distinguish themselves by moving away from classic, traditional dishes and towards experimental cooking & molecular gastronomy?

selena said...

i don't know if i'm to late (most likely) but i would ask what inspired him to make a california type of pizza? what is his favorite thing to eat when sick, lonely, or happy? what would be your very last meal if you could pick? :D just some questions i thought of. i don't know that much about him sorry. but good luck :) can't wait to see how it went.

Heidi / Savory Tv said...

OK I'll play!

- In the current state of economic hardship, many cooks are looking for ways to cook meat affordably without sacrificing quality. Do you have any favorite meat recipes that would fit the bill?

- What are your thoughts on restaurants serving overfished fish, such as Chilean Sea Bass?

- If you had to choose one of your pizza recipes as your last meal, which one would you choose?

There are my three cents! :) Heidi

Anonymous said...

How much was his mother an influence on his cooking and him becoming a chef?

What are his favorite Austrian recipes from his childhood?

What one dish represents true comfort food for him personally?

Is he planning to retire, or will he keep working?

PeggyO said...

If it's not too late, here's a question for the chef, Wolfgang Puck, "If President Obama called and asked him to come up with a complete day's menu and serve it at the White House for the First Family, what would he create?

Poonpappy said...

You're on death row. Whats your last meal

Anonymous said...

Ask him if he would like to add fresh hearts of palm to his frozen Pizzas?