food lovers only
Where did you grow up?
I came to Edgewater, New Jersey from South Korea when I was 12. But I grew up right outside Philly, going to bars and clubs here when I was young. I still live 15 minutes over the bridge.
What’s your background as a chef?
Back in 1997, Sagami in New Jersey was booming. When I was young, my mom used to take me there for my birthday as a special occasion thing. The sushi there opened my mind. I told my mother I wanted to open up a Japanese restaurant. She says, “Joseph, go to culinary school and I’ll open up a restaurant for you, no problem.” I moved to New York, went to culinary school, I came out, I told Mom I was ready. She says, “No, Joseph, you need experience.” That experience took me 22 years. I thought sushi was a very simple thing — good rice, good wasabi, good fish — but the more I learned, the more I realized I needed to learn and keep on learning.
Now, Mom is retired, but she helps out in the back. She wanted to me to do well. It’s a big family business.
...read more about me here @phillymag.com
Photo by Alexandra Jones
Chef Joseph Kim
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