Q. Culinary school trained or self-taught?
A. Self taught. I’ve been working in restaurants since the age of 15, starting as a dishwasher, then working my way up and picking things up along the way.
Q. What is your favorite food from your childhood?
A. My Mom’s steak fajitas.
Q. What dish would you recommend to someone that has never eaten at 4th & Olive?
A. The Boudin Blanc Sausage pretty much encompasses the whole concept of the restaurant food-wise. It’s a sausage, but it’s also delicate and it incorporates both the French and the German sides of the restaurant. For weekend brunch, I would recommend our Country Breakfast. It has housemade pork and cabbage sausage, seared thick bacon, two organic eggs, fresh jam and a baguette. This showcases what we do at 4th & Olive. We use ingredients from local sources and simply craft them into something special.
Q. Favorite knife and why?
A. An old Winchester brand, early 1900s carbon steel knife that keeps a really sharp edge and is a great slicer. I got it on eBay.
Q. How would you describe working in your kitchen?
A. Fun. And hard. The staff is always laughing in my kitchen. I don’t know how it happens but the staff is laughing the entire shift. It’s the most fun – and happiest kitchen I’ve ever been in.
Q. What and where would we find you eating on your day off?
A. I get days off???? I love Chianina Steakhouse on Naples.
Q. Something in your fridge or freezer that would surprise people?
A. Red Baron frozen pizza. Just throw that thing in the oven and eat the whole thing and then go to sleep.
Q. What are your guilty pleasures?
A. Trying to find the best bad Chinese food.
Q. If you died tomorrow, what dish would you be remembered for?
A. 4th & Olive’s Lobster Bisque.
Q. What’s on your Bucket List?
A. Traveling to far exotic places with my wife.
Chef Alex lives in Downtown Long Beach with his wife Andrena and husky Spade, with a new baby girl that made her debut in June 2018.