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Nine on the Line

Ken Foy

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Ken Foy moved to Tucson in 2003 and became the executive chef at Tucson Country Club. He has also worked as the executive chef at Lowe's Island (now Trump National Golf Club), International and Dominion Valley CC in northern Virginia. He is currently chef at Dante's Fire (located at 2526 E. Grant Road). Besides Dante's Fire has become a favorite amongst industry folk, an honor in its own right. Chef Foy also sells his artisan bread at local farmers markets; although Jon, the general manager at Dante's says it's mostly an excuse to do more shopping. Check out Chef Foy's food at Dante's Fire, including their new menu items, such as foie pops with a Thai peanut sauce and local roasted jalapeños with sriracha cream cheese and candied bacon.

What was the first dish you had that changed your perspective on food? A white truffle appetizer at Café Boulud in New York. I saw it and wanted it, and I waved the waiter off when he tried to tell me the price. I was like 22 and a bit cocky, best $90 mistake I ever made though. What are you eating these days? I've always liked Asian food. Lately it's been a lot of pho, anything Thai, stuff like that. What was the first dish you remember cooking? Cranberry lemon chicken. I was cooking for my Uncle Marty in his catering kitchen. I didn't know anything and I used Country Time Lemonade powder. While I was trying to make a reduction out of it, I learned the hard way that boiling liquid sugar hurts when you stick a finger in it to test it, and hurts worse when you stick that finger still covered into your mouth. I was 13; it was a big learning moment.   What concept, ingredient or food trend does everyone seem to love, but you just can't stomach?

One word: Gluten. I want it back.

What chef, with us or passed on, would you most like to cook or eat dinner with? No doubt, Anthony Bourdain. I'm sure a lot of my generation's chefs appreciate the way he lives for good food and a good time. He explores the world in and around food. What city, other than Tucson, is your favorite place to eat?

Vegas, baby! What other town can have one block where you can have the best eateries of California wine country, France, and Manhattan? The place is a magnet for cuisine from all over the world and I like options.

Speaking in junk food terms, what is your favorite guilty pleasure? Food City has these little candied cherry slices. I'm sure you can get them other places, but that's where I get my fix. Top three Tucson restaurants?

The Dish in the Rum Runner, Miss Saigon (best pho in town I'd say), and when I need my East Coast fix, a Frankie's cheesesteak with lots and lots of Wiz.

With a figurative electric chair in your immediate future, what is your last meal?

Open with a large plate of foie gras, just seared. Then some shrimp and grits, Charleston, South Carolina style. And I'd want the chair put on the beach.

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