Chris Loughran

You know nothing, Jon Snow.

I did not grow up in a food-centric culture, but that’s not to say we didn’t eat good food. My mom bakes the best apple pie. My dad makes ice cream that we would eat over waffles for Christmas breakfast (and still do!) There’s a family recipe for banana bread that’s delicious. But in between the holidays and special occasions, I ate a lot of overcooked meats, dry sandwiches, and tons of peanut butter. I liked those things.

I started branching out in college (Hail to Pitt!) eating medium rare hamburgers with blue cheese. But it was still too many chicken strips and bland honey mustard until I moved to New York City.

My whole world changed. I started working at Balthazar Bakery where I learned that everything good was butter; croissants, brioche, tartines. I met a French woman. I married her. I ate more butter. I learned about cheese. Found out I was a sucker for hard, aged, nutty ones. We visited France and ate more cheese. While in France, I made that family recipe banana bread, substituting crème fraîche for the sour in cream in the recipe – out of necessity. It was better. I knew nothing.

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