During today’s episode, host Andy Chapman speaks to Jana Billiot, the Chef de Cuisine of Restaurant R’evolution in the Royal Sonesta Hotel in New Orleans.
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After receiving her Bachelor of Science in Culinary Arts from Chef John Folse’s Culinary Institute, she went to Chicago to complete her externship. She worked as a Sous Chef at TRU Restaurant in Chicago for four years. And, just as she was feeling homesick for Louisiana, she overheard a conversation in the kitchen about a position opening up for a new venture by Chef John Folse and Rick Tramonto down in New Orleans. She asked for the opportunity and was hired during a call.
At Folse’s Bittersweet Plantation, she worked alongside the executive team building the menu, working on the concept and the original design for Restaurant R’evolution. All of her hard work and grit paid off because eventually, she earned her way to her current leadership position at Restaurant R’evolution.
In the episode, it’s apparent that she is confident and comfortable mentoring the staff. She loves to see them shine. She also talks about how her work takes her to offsite events such as the Los Angeles Food & Wine, Pebble Beach Food & Wine, and she has even gone to London for an event. All the while, she balances her work duties with her family life.
Her advice for young Chefs new to the restaurant business:
- Be a sponge and learn as much as you can.
- Read and research new techniques.
- Find a mentor for guidance.
- Be humble and open to suggestions.
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