Grill the Chef: Bourbon Steak’s Brent Balika

Chef Brent Balika

Chef Brent Balika

By Kelly DiNardo

After working at Charlie Trotter’s in Chicago and Mandalay Bay in Vegas, pastry chef Brent Balika joined Bourbon Steak. He not only focuses on the sweet stuff, but also manages the cheese program. Over the last few years, he has learned everything he can about cheese and is now making an ever-expanding selection of house-made cheeses at the restaurant. Here, we turn the tables and grill the chef.



What’s in your fridge or freezer that would surprise people?

Frozen Pizza.

Last meal you cooked for yourself?
Breakfast – pancakes – in bed with my lady.

Last meal on earth?

Either my Mom’s fried pork cutlets, or my Grandmother’s Spaghetti and Meatballs.

Which six people — alive or dead — would you choose to attend your ultimate dinner party? What would you serve?
Brillat Savarin, Grant Achatz, James Beard, Julia Child, Jaqcues Pepin, Ferdinand Point.

I would could a simple homey meal, something that I grew up on. Whether it be fried chicken with all the fixins or a summer BBQ.

What non-food-related things do you do for fun?
Does drink wine and beer count? if not, movies.

If you could go anywhere on vacation, where would you go?
Hong Kong, Bali, India, Tokyo, London, Anywhere South America, New Zealand, Barcelona, Italy, Shanghai, Australia, Bora Bora

What’s on your DVR?
Actually, I don’t watch TV

  • Antknee

    Nice tutorial on my favorite style of beer!

  • John C. Winters

    Always have time for a Saison…