Published on March 10th, 2014 | by TLV News0
Cook of the House: Nick Reppond, Pitmaster at Lamar Lounge
How did you get into cooking? Watching my mom and grandmother at an early age, and when I was 15, I got a job at a diner working the graveyard shift and after that I was hooked.
What is the best thing about your job? I love the entire process of cooking a whole hog. From lighting the fire to prepping the hog, shoveling the coals, tending to and loving the hog, and after 18 hrs, eating something really delicious.
Who is your favorite cook/chef? There are so many out there, it’s hard to just name one. John Currence and Vishwesh Bhatt have both had a serious influence in my cooking and in my life, just in general. Without either of them, I wouldn’t have this opportunity.
What kitchen tool/utensil could you not live without? My shovel & pit
What is your favorite flavor combo? Spicy, Salty, Sweet
Name three items in your fridge: Blue Plate Mayo, Pepper Jack Cheese, Louisiana Hot Sauce
Where do you get your best recipe ideas? I like good classic comfort food. I cook what I grew up on, and I listen to what comforts other people.
What is the best meal you’ve ever eaten? The first real date that Angie and I went on. We went to City Grocery and I think we ate almost everything on the menu that night.
What is the weirdest meal you’ve ever eaten? As a kid, I spent a lot of time in North Louisiana, and we ate a lot of weird stuff. Nutria Stew, Squirrel & Dumplings, and Chitterlings just to name a few.
Favorite midnight snack: Ice cream. Any ice cream.
Favorite kitchen music: Anything from Alice & Chains to Sly and the Family Stone. Just no Dub Step.
Who would you most like to cook for and what would you prepare? My grandmother, Jane Reppond. I would prepare a roast chicken, stewed okra & tomatoes, dirty rice, homemade yeast rolls, and caramel cake. She loved caramel cake.
Where do you like to dine in Oxford? Snackbar
Favorite restaurant in the world: Angie and I had the chance to go to New York with John Currence for an event. We were able to pull away late one night and go to Balthazaar. It was like we stepped back in time to an old french bistro. Black and white tile floors, red leather banquette seating, and the servers even wore bow ties. I loved everything about the space. The food was simple and it was awesome.
Aspirations: I’d love to take Lamar Lounge on the road and let people know Mississippi is doing great BBQ too.
Fried catfish…eat the tail or no? Hell yeah, eat the tail! It’s like a catfish flavored Ruffle potato chip!
This article was originally printed in The Local Voice #198 (published February 20, 2014). To download a PDF of this issue, click HERE.