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October 29, 2011

Meet the Glowbalites | Guest Star: Jason Vallee @ChefJayVallee

The best chefs out there all seemed to start in their Grandmother’s kitchen.  Jason Vallee is no exception.  Learning to cook with his Quebec native grandmother, Jason took his love of the kitchen and French cuisine and enrolled in the culinary program at Vancouver Island University.    He can now be found at glowbal grill as their newest Executive Chef. Congratulations Jason!  Follow him on Twitter @ChefJayVallee

Name: Jason Vallee

Position: Executive Chef- glowbal grill

Where did you grow up?
Powell River,  B.C.

What inspired you or how did you start in the hospitality business?
I was inspired by my grandmother.  I always enjoyed helping her prepare Christmas Eve dinner for our family. She taught me how to make the dishes she made in Quebec like Cassoulet and Tourtiere.

I started cooking in High School where I was enrolled in the culinary program. We did special events every year—the biggest being the oyster festival, serving up to 300 people, preparing oysters in many different ways. From there I enrolled in Culinary Arts at Vancouver Island University where I continued to learn cooking skills as well as get an introduction into the vast culinary universe.

Give a brief outline of your work history and accomplishments.
Fresh out of Culinary school I began working at Val ‘disere  a fine dining French restaurant in Whistler. For 3 years I worked side by side with Chef Roland Pfaff learning as much as I could about French cuisine. Preparing everything from stocks to sauces, vegetables to meats. I moved on to Vancouver working at Raincity Grill for a brief period. I continued on, ending up at COAST restaurant. Working at COAST I used my knowledge and skills to progress through the ranks of the Glowbal Group.  Accomplishing my goal of becoming sous chef, I helped re-open COAST in its new location.  I have yet to win any awards but really my career is just beginning.

What’s your favorite part of the restaurant business?
The fast pace and high stress are what keep me addicted to the biz.  Food and restaurants are continually evolving, which keeps everyday exciting and fresh. But my favorite part is the cooking, creating a dish that warms the heart, excites the palate and make our guest smile.

Do you have a favorite GRG location? Why?
SOCIETY where I got my first crack at Executive Chef.  Everyone who works there had a lot of fun together. COAST was also one of my favs as part of the opening team on Alberni St.   I feel I played a big role in creating what it is today.

Other than the restaurant business, what jobs or careers have you held?
I guess technically it’s still the restaurant biz but I worked at McDonalds during high school.

If you weren’t in this business, what would you be doing?
I can’t see myself doing anything else but, it would be awesome to be a power forward in the NHL .

Favorite meal?
My Grandma’s Tourtiere with ketchup and her baked beans with molasses and fried bread.

What’s your favorite vacation spot and why?
All I need is a sandy beach, shining sun, and a bucket of beer.

What do you do in your spare time?
Watch movies, T.V. read books and cooking magazines, and playtstation3

Iphone or Blackberry?
Blackberry but, the Iphone is looking pretty good.

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