Good Stuff! My 15 Questions with Chef Spike Mendelsohn.

4 Jan

On L: The Good Stuff Cookbook (image via Wiley). On R: Yum - a Good Stuff burger! (image via Metrocurean)

If you know anything about me, it’s that I find food to be a huge source of design inspiration.  So it should come as no surprise that I am interested in learning more about the design aesthetic of various foodies…and the more DC-related those foodies are the better!  Way back in the summer I interviewed Spike Mendelsohn (of Good Stuff Eatery and We, The Pizza, and former Top Chef contestant) via his sister and business partner, Micheline.  This was right before We, The Pizza opened.  My husband and I love to take our toddler to his restaurants (as well as go alone!), and we enjoy the food there a lot: specifically the Free-range Turkey Burger at Good Stuff and the Buffalo Chicken Pie at We The Pizza.  Yum!  I also adore Top Chef much to the dismay of my husband’s regularly scheduled Tivo programs, so it seemed to make sense that I interview Spike for my blog so that we can all see what he thinks about decor in DC.  I’ve waited too many months to post this, and getting the awesome Good Stuff cookbook (pictured above) for Christmas reminded me that I absolutely needed to share this with you all.  Enjoy the interview, and I hope to be posting many more “15 Questions” in the near future!

Which neighborhood in DC inspires your personal style the most?

Capitol Hill.   I’m a Capitol Hill addict, I love it here.  Everyone is so great and the block parties and neighborhood joints are fantastic.  The architecture between old row houses, grand scale homes, new lofts etc… is so cool and neat.  I like the idea of old meets new to embrace the history but give it a modern twist.

In your opinion, what’s the best designed restaurant in town?

Rough one.  I like Zaytania: the colors, the simple feel.  I like Brasserie Beck for the style, and love Taylor Gourmet sandwich shop. Will Artley’s place in Del Ray, “Evening Star Cafe,” is right on for me: cool, fun, relaxing cozy and hip.

Does design matter more to you in a professional kitchen or a home kitchen?

Oh I spend more time in a professional kitchen so that one much more!  My kitchen at home is tiny and nothing is where it’s suppose to be!  Last thing I want to do is cook so I look for the cereal bowl and milk in the fridge…that’s it!

So tell us: have you seen the interior of Tom or Padma’s kitchen, and if so, are they amazing?

I haven’t although I wouldn’t pass up dinner so if they are reading this…send some love my way!

We know you like sriracha.  A lot.  So if sriracha were a person, where would he/she shop for furniture?

Ummmmm interesting question!  It would probably shop in the boutiques on U Street.

What’s your favorite color?

Burnt orange.

Last thing you ate?

Pizza pizza pizza and a porchetta sandwich!  Testing out new recipes for my new place “We, The Pizza” so I’m taste-testing pizza all night all day!

Last thing you bought for your home?

A pasta spoon. I love gadgets in the kitchen and I found this one when I was walking around and stumbled on a little kitchen store.

Coffee or Tea?

Espresso, 3-4 times a day. A must!

Book, Blog, or Tivo?

Tivo are you kidding?  I have Whale Wars taped and Dexter and Entourage. When I get home at night it’s the best way to unwind.

Fluorescent or Incandescent lightbulbs?


Polished Concrete or Reclaimed Wood?

Reclaimed wood.  I love that feeling of old school style.

Chalkboard Paint – yes or no?

No, why mess with a good thing.

Is it ever ok to hang a television over the fireplace?

I hope so!  Mine at my house is over our fireplace!

Predict the trendiest color for 2011:

Blue – I’ve seen it on all the runway…just kidding.  I have no idea…ask me about food and I’d have an answer!

And there you have it…my long lost interview with Spike Mendelsohn.  What fun!

Design consultations for all styles and budgets: JGB Interiors.


2 Responses to “Good Stuff! My 15 Questions with Chef Spike Mendelsohn.”

  1. Erin Miles January 4, 2011 at 5:36 PM #

    So whats the correct answer to the TV over the fire place?

    • jgbinteriors January 5, 2011 at 1:41 PM #

      That’s a tough one…usually “no,” sometimes “yes.” It depends.

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