Brunch by Day, Burgers By Night: An Interview with the co-owner of WHISK
“There are good days. There are bad days. And there are crappy days,” says chef and owner of Whisk, Son of a Butcher, and soon to open Point and Feather, Rick Rodriguez. Rick sat down with the Ignited team to chat through the story of Son of a Butcher, the challenges of operating two restaurants, and what’s on the horizon for the Whisk team.
You may remember from our last run-in with Chef Rick that he was born in Mexico City, where he was introduced to food through prepping recipes with his grandmother. After moving to Chicago, Rick got a taste for corporate fast food, McDonald’s. This is where he realized that he could make a living in the food and hospitality industry. After working for other chefs, learning the ins and outs of how to operate a kitchen, he finally made the call to go into business with his brother David.
Chef Rick’s goal is to create approachable food with a Latin flair. This is perfectly summed up in the Masa Steak Fries at Son of a Butcher. Potatoes are mashed and coated with Maseca (Mexican cornmeal), and fried to a crispy golden brown. The fries are then topped with perfectly cooked Arrachera skirt steak, house-made salsa verde, sour cream, and queso fresco. Think a Latin version of Poutine, crispy on the outside, and melt in your mouth in the middle with an explosion of Latin flavor in every bite.
Rick says it’s the responsibility that keeps him going. He is currently employing about 40 people between the two restaurants, and that number will be growing as the new Point and Feather endeavor gets underway. Even on those “crappy” days he knows that what his business and passion is providing for employees, families, and friends, and that keeps him powering through.
The sky is really the limit with Chef Rick, who told us that he could one day see himself opening and running a small boutique hotel, crafting a memorable and approachable experience for guests, complete with amazing Latin-inspired room service.
Listen in and find hear it from the man himself!
Thank you to our sponsor, Team Merchant, for helping produce this episode!
Photos property of WHISK.