Episode 3: Thailand to Sundance
New York is great, but there's a whole world out there. Chef Gavin decides to leave the city for a rendezvous with his brother in Thailand.
In Thailand, Gavin caught the fever for the flavor of southeast Asian cuisine. Armed with the skills of traditional French cooking techniques, he dives deep into the culture by learning how to make traditional curries, pastes, and other Thai staples like sticky rice cooked in bamboo.
Gavin ends up spending months in Thailand, mostly living in an illegal Burmese refugee camp/yoga retreat on an island in the Gulf of Thailand. They let him stay because he cooked their meals. He absorbed as much food culture and knowledge as possible before heading home to a job in Park City, Utah--cooking at 'Wahso' for the Sundance Film Festival.
Needless to say, Utah is not Thailand. But Gavin stayed for a couple of years, a couple of Sundance festivals, and the Salt Lake Winter Olympics of 2002. During his stint as head chef, 'Wahso' was voted the best restaurant for two years in a row.