Checking In With Chef Jake Andrews
We had the pleasure of chatting with Jake Andrews, Chef de Cuisine at Sweetfire Kitchen at La Cantera Resort & Spa. Below, he dishes on what he loves most about his job, his philosophy in the kitchen, and his favorite ingredients to cook with.
What do you love most about your job, and working where you do?
Being able to exceed the expectations of our guest. It’s great that we have the ability to meet with ranchers, farmers, foragers and build a relationship to source the best possible products available. Working at La Cantera Resort & Spa allows us to place an emphasis on quality.
Could you describe your cooking approach/philosophy?
My approach to food is all about flavor and technique. Mastering basic cooking and knife skills will drive creativity and inspiration for new, more modern dishes. Also, the restaurant identity must be respected and visible to our guests. My philosophy about food is always freshness, quality, and local, when possible. Ingredients should be respected and treated well to put the best dish forward.
What are some of the menu items you’re most proud of, and why?
Roasted sea bass and our Windy Bar Ranch Ribeye. These dishes showcase quality ingredients and simple preparations; however, they earn us the highest praise.
What are your favorite ingredients to cook with?
Beef, onions, and Thai chilis.
What culinary trends do you see, based on what your customers are ordering and requesting?
We are seeing a return to basics and simplicity. Our guests are more inclined to order and request recognizable and approachable foods.
San Antonio’s a fun town. How do you like spend your downtime?
Getting outdoors. We have many lakes and rivers in the area, offering a tremendous array of water recreation. I also have a couple of project cars I am restoring.