Trio Restaurant chef Phillip Martin prepares a Chilean sea bass with English peas, wild mushrooms, potato, watermelon radish, and buttermilk-herb vinaigrette.
PHOTOGRAPHY BY NATE ABBOTT
Uptown Palm Springs favorite Trio Restaurant — a name that speaks to the fusion of food, art, and music — recently appointed a new executive chef. Phillip Martin, a musician in his own right, hails from East Los Angeles. With a passion for foraging, frequenting farmers markets, and sourcing ingredients directly from the field, Martin looks forward to bringing fresh, seasonally inspired dishes to the menu.
His experience includes work at a two-Michelin-star restaurant in New York and a variety of hot spots in L.A. “I came out here to do a little consulting, and after a week, I fell in love with the place,” Martin says. “It’s a breath of fresh air to be in a different food scene and see what people do with their interpretations of cuisines or restaurants.”
To tap his expertise, we asked Martin to share some advice for cooking at home. As the new guy in town, we also wanted to find out whether he’s had a chance to try any other local establishments. Here’s what he had to say.
Chef Phillip Martin
TASTE YOUR FOOD
“If you’re tasting as you’re cooking, or [trying an ingredient] before you cook it, it’s less intimidating. You get to appreciate it, and you’ll know when it’s ready … [When cooking at home,] just have fun with it. It’s fine to make mistakes.”
USE YOUR BROILER
“If people understood how to use their home broilers, they would be a lot more impressed with the food than they think. It’s like a reverse barbecue. When you put things on a barbecue, the heat comes from the bottom. With the broiler, the heat comes from the top — you can get good roasting or caramelization or charring because of that direct heat. And you’re not cooking it in as much fat [as you would with a pan]. It can be a very clean form of cooking.”
DINE WITH YOUR NEIGHBORS
“I was fortunate enough to have dinner at Workshop Kitchen & Bar. It’s right down the street from Trio. Seeing everything from the design to the cuisine and the service to how the menus look — I love that stuff, from a place of appreciation. [As chefs and restaurateurs,] we all get to express ourselves in a particular way, and it’s really cool seeing how everybody decides to do it.”
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