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PERSONAL CHEF

PERSONAL CHEF
FOOD FOR REAL PEOPLE

Friday, November 22, 2013

A FILIPINO INFLUENCE W. FRIENDS ON MAUI, THE TOP CULINARY BUSINESS STARS

It Is The Cuisine That's On The Rise
One day a few weeks ago, I had the pleasure to be in the company of Chef Mark Ellman, a friend that has visions unlike anyone so far on the island of Maui, who has a team behind him to make food, great food and people come together.

"Sheldon's going to bring local and Filipino style foods to Wailea," said Mark. "Stay tuned." What Mark's team actually did was bank on something very unique. Think major league baseball. You have a great pitcher that's young, and a local talent. He plays in a city with a great organization, and wins a World Series. And after that win, he is a free agent and pitches for a cross town team, and becomes the center piece of that organization. Okay, I'll get to the this right now.
Me and Mark at his house one day eating and talking shop

Sheldon Simeon was the executive chef at Star Noodle, a company that's a branch of  the Old Lahaina Luau. And any businessman worth his salt knows that Michael Moore and company created a mega multimillion dollar business with the Old Lahaina Luau, along with restaurants Aloha Mixed Plate and Leoda's. Sheldon was that winning pitcher. He put himself on the map being one of the finalists on Top Chef Seattle on Bravo.

Now Sheldon puts on a new logo, his very own brand with the backing of a genius in local business, Mark Ellman. "It's great Ron, it's totally great, being a part of this… I can't put this into words, everything Mark touches man…it turns to gold," said Sheldon on our recent video shoot in Mala Wailea. "I'm so excited."

One day I had dinner with Mark and his lovely wife Judy, and Mark cooked us some great pasta, and a no flour torte. At the dinner, we talked, "I'll travel to get ideas Ron," Mark says. He leaves the table, wipes his mouth with a napkin, "You want another beer Ron?" of course I can't say no. Judy hands me a cold bottle of beer, and Mark and I head to his large flat screen computer, where he starts to show me what he looks at when it comes to food. And he searches and searches, like a madman looking for that pot of gold. "There's a lot of stuff out there, lots."

Well that dinner made sense in what he was talking about because seemingly, and in reality really, he got what he was waiting for, a chance to show off a cuisine that's on the rise, that's very popular around the globe, just not in your face like Japanese sushi joints, or Indian curry houses, most Filipino joints are hole in the walls, and quite frankly, the foods are less presentable because it's all mushy braises really…and I'm Filipino so I know. But when Sheldon was on national television, things took a turn for the better. It put Michael Moore's team on the map, and of course now Sheldon's in Mark's camp, and they are ready to hit the culinary trails blazing! I mean Blazing with a capital B. Mark sent me this link, and go check it out, Mark's team pulls no punches, when they are ready to launch, they launch, and in some way, they're like, "Here we are, you didn't think it huh? But look what we are doing!!! Try, just try to top that!" Mark's team flat out succeeds, and I don' think this concept will fail. 

The New Restaurant is called MIGRANT http://migrantmaui.com/

Chef Sheldon being miked up for his video shoot in Mala at Wailea, associate producer Sascha Bauml does the work.
Chef Sheldon has a sense of humor, WWE Culinary, hey if you ain't got Tude, stay at home junior, this is the big leagues, only the strong survive. Great sense of humor.
The ingredients for Chef Sheldon's Pancit Canton a Filipino noodle dish, think Chinese chow mein, it's hinted by patis (fish sauce). If you love Vietnamese and Thai foods and haven't delved into Filipino food at all, you need to trek to Migrant opening soon.
Blurred by action, Chef is ready to slice up high quality pork for his Classic Pork Adobo and his more fancy style of Pork Adobo.
As Chef sliced, he was telling me, "Ron I'm beat man, only 2 hours sleep last night, I had to do the fund raiser for the typhoon victims in the Philippines, I am tired."
But Chef's a warrior, a trooper, he has a family, with another one on the way. Personally, some chefs would call it off, make some excuse like "Sorry can't do it, I feel sick." But Chef Sheldon is an all-pro.
Chef plating his classic Pork Adobo in a bowl with local style white sticky rice and tomatoes.
The bowl presentation is simple, that's how we Filipinos eat, simple.
 
However, this piece of tender pork makes a fancy fine dine Pork Adobo,
 "It's a different take on pork adobo for the restaurant."

Now for those of you who are not Filipino, adobo be it chicken or pork, is a main dish on many a family table for dinner or lunch. The tangy sauce infused with the natural juices of the meats make it a simple and a delicious meal. And if Italians love pastas, Filipinos love noodles as well, and we love pancit. Chef Sheldon made his, and he actually blew my mind, he made his almost to the T as how my father made his. All of the ingredients and the way he sautéed all of the proteins up, and adding broth, and letting the noodles soak up all the sauce it was a dish I haven't had for a long time. You see, the more you mess with foods, the less appealing it is. Now I've seen Mark Ellman cook at his home, and it's just simple with love put into it, and Sheldon does it the same way. It's going to be a major league success mark my words.

Chef letting me taste the adobo sauce, as we say here in Hawaii
"Da Buggaz ONO!"
Simple Pancit Canton, sorry Sheldon I shook the bowl, all the protein went to the bottom, but man it was ONO! 

So to all of you foodies that want some great local style foods with a Filipino twist, Mark Ellman and Company, with Chef Sheldon will put this type of cuisine on the map. It will be something talked about for some time to come.

"What makes this gig even more special is working with great people that care from the top down, with Shep Gordon and Mark, it's just totally awesome!"
-Chef Sheldon Simeon

copyright 2013