We had the good fortune of connecting with Kenneth Anderson and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Kenneth, what role has risk played in your life or career?
Risk taking has been essential to my personal development and business from the begining. I recently started a podcast with my chef partner and a friend called just jump and we discuss how taking a leap of faith on a regular basis is how we have come as far as we have. I did not start my career in a conventional way, instead of going to intern at a restaurant after culinary school as most of my peers i took a shot on myself and started catering. So many times along that journey i stood confident in front of clients saying yes to large and crazy events that on the inside i had no clue how i would pull off. This would become an everlasting thread through my career and I won’t stop pishing boundries beyond my level of comfort.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
As a culinary artist I am on a constant pursuit for inspiration, which comes to me in so many forms. I can find inspiration in a color or in the texture of a tree, in flowers so many crazy things but where i truly have found my inspiration has been in travel. Learning food through the lense of culture, people and relationships has been the key inspiration to my food and how i am able to connect with people. For truly connection with people is what fuels me. I remember before even going to culinary school i had gotten my first big “rich”!client and before i pulled into the residence i prayed outside the gate and said Lord if this isn’t about relationship I don’t want it. And God has honored that simple prayer ever since.
But starting this culinary journey was not easy for me. I got married very young at the age of 21 and i still had a lot of growing, developing and work to do. So when I graduated culinary school in 2007 I has only been married 2 years and I had to try to find out how to make a name for mysef in this field. I truly believed I was supposed to go into business for myself apposed to working at a restaurant, so that what I pursued. But as i stated that did not come easy so i worked part time at call centers doing tele sales and customer support while trying to start catering on the side. I became depressed dealing with the inner turmoil of being a creative and unable to create, having to go into a job every day where there was no relationship nor any passion and feeing like i was never going to make it.
I was about 2 years into my career when i got a call to give a teaching lesson to someone on the side, because at that time that’s what i did, any side hustle in my field. When I arrived at the women’s home and began to teach her i found out she was a private chef for the creators of the smurfs, and she was making a lot more money than i was doing it! So when i got back to my desk the next day misarabble i told God that lady i just taught how to cook has my job. Lol. I had been told years ealier that it would take at least 15 years before i could become a personal chef and I believed it. Wel later that day while i was supposed to be working i was filling out applications for personal chef jobs. Long story short within 2 weeks i got my first personal chef gig and it was for Tim Allen and this was the start of the turn around for me. But through all of it, culinary school, depression, losing money on gigs trying to impress people, working ling hours and not having much of anything financially to show for it, had it not been for my wife loving me, supporting me and often times financially pulling me through those tough years i would have never made it. That and a whole lot of Gods grace.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
When i have family visit the first thing i think to do is go through the canyons and head to the beach. For me there is nothing like a good drive and la is full of them. But i also pride myself in finding the best places to go eat and before covid if i really wanted to blow someone away with an amazing meal full of atmosphere, good food and surprise it would be a trip to the bazaar by jose andres or volt by michael voltaggio. Thankfully my wife has also become a foodie so we will go around town checking out spots like broken spanish and nightshade and my sous chef/ business partner and i have at least 2 over the top food experiences every year and i would note bavel downtown being one of the best. There is also nothing like a good day going to the original farmers market at the grove and now that there is a sidecar donuts across the street it is even more necessary.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
My wife My mom
My sous chefs
Tepesuz photography Andrewshoots Christophe_la_ SAW artist