Nicholas Salvi

Jo McGarry
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Friday - November 16, 2007 Share | | podcast Podcast |

Nicholas Salvi
Nicholas Salvi


Title: Executive Chef E&O Trading Company, Honolulu.

Where were you born and raised? Born in Boston, and raised in Boston and Hawaii.

What inspired you to become a chef?

When I was 8 years old I saw a commercial with a young boy named Jason who was setting the dinner table. At the end of the commercial he put a folded piece of paper on the table with his name on it. That is when I knew I wanted to be a chef and own my own restaurant.

Anyone you consider a mentor?

I’ve been really lucky on this journey to have worked with really cool people. Ronnie Nasuti and Jackie Lau from Roy’s taught me a lot. Ronnie is able to scold you and point things out without them being offensive. And Jackie is an incredible teacher. I think I could have learned more from her if I hadn’t been so young. Also George Lietchy of the Kauai Marriott gave me a lot of guidance - and let me ice sculpt for hours at a time!

How would you describe the culinary style at E&O?

The dishes are quite unique with strong, bold flavors. They are very comforting. Once you try them you will want to have them over and over again. We’re always working with grilling techniques and different ways to prepare dishes.

I understand you have a new chef’s tasting menu. What kind of dishes do you feature on that?

My tasting menu is inspired by the food of Thailand and Southeast Asia. The cuisine is Euro-Asian fusion with a contemporary American influence. E&O is known for dishes that reflect the flavor, color and texture of different cultures. It’s challenging, but I like it.

Who would you most like to invite to E&O for Thanksgiving?

My mom. She is getting older and she’s not in great health. When I was younger she would bring my sister and me to all the fine dining restaurants on the East Coast. I remember meals at Jasper White’s, Inn On the Cliffs, Four Seasons, Gallagher’s in New York ...

Do you cook at home?

I used to, but since starting at the restaurant I’m hardly home now! It’s been a while since I cooked at home.

Best part of the job?

Teaching staff and watching them learn. I enjoy planting seeds and watching them flourish.


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