Seakyeong Kim, the Executive Chef of Charlie Palmer at Bloomingdale’s is a Culinary Institute of America graduate and flagship Aureole veteran. His cooking mirrors the rustic but sophisticated design of the restaurant. Chef Kim and his team create dishes that are seasonal and unique, while keeping in mind the importance of wine pairing from the restaurant’s diverse wine list. Learn more about Seakyeong below:

Where are you from?
Yeosu, South Korea

How long have you been working at Charlie Palmer at Bloomingdale’s?
I opened the restaurant in 2008. I was the Executive Sous Chef and took over in 2011. Before that, I started with an externship at Aureole New York in 2004 and left for about one year to go to Europe in 2007.

How old were you when you found your passion for cooking?
I have loved cooking since I was very, very little.

Do you have any hidden talents?
I haven’t found anything yet besides cooking.

If you had to eat one thing/dish for the rest of your life, what would it be?
I wouldn’t want to eat just one thing for the rest of my life… but, if I had to choose, it would be kimchi stew with steamed rice. I am Korean, please don’t laugh at me!

Do you have a role model you look up to?
Charlie Palmer. First, he is one of greatest chefs out there. I like his style of cooking (he makes REAL food). I remember he told me that I need to make food that people want to come back to and have the next day. Second, he is a good leader and mentor.

What is your dream vacation?
Somewhere with no phone, no e-mail, and lots of different food and drinks!

What is your favorite dish to make?
I don’t have a particular dish I like to create. I like to prepare food that takes time to make it really delicious while using my skills and experience. Of course I love Korean soups and stews. Koreans eat a lot of those.

What is your favorite thing dish to make on the menu?
Right now? I would say Boudin Noir Stuffed Calamari and House Made Kimchi Risotto because it’s different and guests really like them. I just really like these items on the menu.

What is the first thing you learned from Chef Charlie Palmer?
He not only taught me cooking techniques, but he also explained what kind of food people would prefer. And of course he taught me leadership.