On the line: Chef Corey Siegel
Christa Glennie Seychew
Name: Corey Siegel
Current title: senior apprentice at the Greenbrier Hotel
Years behind the stove: 6
Young, driven, and talented, Chef Corey Siegel is a shining example of what can become of an ambitious and hardworking young chef who makes the right connections and aims for greatness. The Amherst native, alongside chef Richard Rosendale of the famed Greenbrier hotel (located in West Virginia), made the papers in February by winning the Bocuse d’Or national finals, an honor that has earned him the privilege of representing the United States at the biennial Bocuse d’Or, to be held in Lyon, France in 2013.
Rosendale and Siegel will spend the next year preparing for the competition under the guidance of several coaches, who also happen to be some of the best chefs in the country—Grant Achatz, Gavin Kaysen, and Gabriel Kruether. Their training will take place in an exact replica of the kitchen used in the international competition, erected in the basement of the Greenbrier for the singular purpose of providing the ideal surroundings for the grueling hours of practice the two chefs need to prepare properly for the challenge.
Siegel, a graduate of the Culinary Institute of America, trained early on at Park Country Club in Williamsville. He currently works as Rosendale’s senior apprentice at Greenbrier.
Preferred style of cuisine:
Classical French, with a modern twist
Best LP to cook by:
Michael Jackson’s Bad
Favorite classic dish/preparation:
Restaurant I’m dying to try:
Geranium in Denmark
Food no chef should love, but I do anyway:
What kind of chef doesn’t love every food?
My go-to food reference cookbook:
The Escoffier Cookbook and Guide to the Fine Art of Cookery: For Connoisseurs, Chefs, Epicures
Most influential person in your career:
I have been fortunate enough to work under the most incredibly talented chefs in the U.S., but I would have to say that my father is the most influential person in my career. He has always supported me, 100 percent.
When you come home, where do you like to eat?
I always felt the Buffalo food scene was quite superb. There are so many cuisines to choose from, but my all-time favorites are Seabar, and Duff’s—for wings, of course!
What most people don’t realize about professional culinary competitions is:
How much preparation, hard work, and dedication it takes to win.
How did you feel when your team won the Bocuse D’or USA finals?
We were so excited. Richard [Rosendale] and I both looked at each other and agreed that we are gonna bring it in Lyon.
What does this mean for your career?
This is such an incredible opportunity and will open so many doors. Doing this competition will help get me in the door wherever I’d like to go, but I still need to be able to back it up [with skill and talent].
What is next?
Now we train harder than ever to bring back the golden Bocuse from Lyon.
Christa Glennie Seychew is Spree’s food editor.