Trilogy Orlando is proud to introduce The Grille’s newest executive chef, Jason Hernandez! We caught up with Jason, a charismatic family man with two young boys who is crafting a dining experience for his Trilogy guests through his love & knowledge for culinary creativity. Let’s take a closer look at Chef Jason’s “recipe for life.”
Exclusive Chef Q&A with Jason Hernandez
First welcome to Trilogy! What about Trilogy Orlando fuels your cooking inspiration?
Trilogy is an overall life changing experience. The crowd is more unique and the environment is independent. It is unique in that I have an opportunity to provide guests with classics items with a new twist and feel. At the same time it is independent, where I get to know our guests unlike traditional restaurants with a general crowd. Here, I personally plan cooking demos, a private educational experience for guests to take part in. In fact, I have a wonderful group of ladies who join me every other Monday and it’s a pleasure teaching my recipes to them.
What a great feeling to know your food is fresh and service- personable! How do you work with your staff?
I work closely with my staff, educating them on everything from new menu dishes to allergy free meals.
Do you make special accommodations to your menu?
No matter what dish, we can take any menu item and modify it to meet our guest’s needs.
Do you have any special dishes in store for the members and guests of Trilogy?
Yes I do! I just rolled out a new menu and introduced a Cedar Plank Salmon dish- the salmon is smoked on wood creating a savory flavor with a honey glaze and the sides include truffle potatoes with seasonal veggies. I try to keep our recipes as fresh as possible depending what’s on the market.
What inspired your desire to hone in on local ingredients and farmers markets (have you found any local markets you love that you can share with Trilogy members)?
There is no better way to cook than with fresh local ingredients. When you take a beet or veggie out of the ground versus one that is packaged halfway across the nation the result is incomparable. I work closely with a local farmer who lives 5 minutes away from Trilogy Orlando, which is located in Groveland, FL . He actually sells to members now and I choose ingredients from him which I use in daily specials. We are also working on an edible garden on premise. I’ve also ordered two hydroponic towers where our team will grow iceberg lettuce, baby greens and so forth- it allows me, on a smaller scale to provide private exclusive dishes to The Grille.
If you had to sum up your cooking mantra in one word, what would it be?
Life. Food gives us life- it’s how passionate you are that creates the end result. It’s part of my culture, it’s what I thrive for and it applies to everyone!
About Chef Jason Hernandez
Originally from New York City, Jason moved to Orlando at 14 years old. Throughout his youth he developed his culinary passion through reading and watching cooking manuals and documentaries. Fast forward to age 16, he landed his first job in the kitchen of his local golf club. Once Jason turned 20 years old his love for cooking turned into his career. He became the kitchen manager of Urban Flats (a local restaurant/wine bar) and shortly after became the manager of El Patron Mexican Restaurant. Here he was given the opportunity to learn the art of Mexican cuisine, which in turn led him to recreating the entire menu from scratch. Jason’s talent caught the attention of Johnathan Canonaco and Brian Buttner, owners and graduates of the Culinary Institute of America who in turn hired Jason to join their team at RusTeak Restaurant and Wine Bar. Here Jason flourished as the Kitchen manager/Sous Chef. Utilizing local farmers markets, ingredients and the concept of farm-to-table, Jason’s love for cooking became his specialty. Today, Trilogy Orlando is proud to call Chef Jason their own! Stop by The Grille and get a taste for its new identity and while you’re at it say “hello” to our newest Trilogy team member.
Inspired by Chef Jason? Share your cooking mantra with us below!