Mike Rafidi

Mike Rafidi


Owner & Chef of MLR Consulting and Albi


The best part of my job is coaching cooks in our kitchen, and guiding them to become chefs. It allows me to be a teacher and it is incredibly inspiring!


EXPERIENCE
EDUCATION
My stage at Noma was the most impactful two months of my career. Putting my head down and understanding the philosophy, and learning how to a work really well with a team, where we worked as one, was eye opening!
I knew very early that I wanted to be a chef. When I was a child, I was always in the kitchen. My grandmother was a chef, and I would cook with her all the time. I debated being a lawyer for about 4 months but that didn’t last very long.
Cooking is such a small part of the puzzle of being a chef. Finding people who want to work with you and learn from you is more important, and getting them excited about what we do and being a part of our team.
Two books that I highly recommend to have on hand are “Spice companion: a guide to the world of spices" by Lior Lev Sercarz, and "The Art of Fermentation" by Sandor Katz.
I like to go on trips to the farmers markets with my team. I find this gets them as excited about the seasonal ingredients as I am, and helps us find inspiration for menu development. I want them to be as much a part of the menu development as possible!
When hiring, I look primarily for a positive attitude. I think it's more important than their skills. Every kitchen is a little different so being flexible and having the passion to learn is key to helping us build a solid team.

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Experience
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James Beard Award