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Fire food & drink executive chef Douglas Katz is what many would call "the Alice Waters of Cleveland." Fresh? Always. And local whenever possible. Lucky for Chef Katz there's a farmers market right outside the restaurant's front door in historic Shaker Square.
The Cleveland Heights native graduated from the Culinary Institute of America and has a bachelor’s of science from the University of Denver School of Hotel and Restaurant Management. After graduation, he worked at The Little Nell in Aspen, Colo., and Wildwood Restaurant in Portland, Ore., where he learned to use a tandoor oven and appreciate the benefits of locally produced food. (Yep, Chef Katz trained in Portlandia.)
Chef Katz returned to Ohio in the late 1990s and went to work as executive chef at Moxie in Beachwood. The restaurant earned a spot on Esquiremagazine's "Best New Restaurants" list under his direction, and Reader's Digestnamed Chef Katz a "Rising Star of American Cuisine." The James Beard Foundation nominated him for best Chef of the Great Lakes Region.
In 2012, 11 years after opening his signature restaurant, fire food & drink, Chef Katz teamed up with the Cleveland Museum of Art to overhaul the museum's food options. Provenance restaurant, café and catering follows fire's lead by offering fresh, seasonal and local food.
Most recently, the chef opened The Katz Club Diner in a restored metal diner in Cleveland Heights, which opens to host specialty pop-up eating experiences throughout the year.
From his reuse of historic buildings to his support for thoughtful fishing and farming practices, Chef Katz lives and breathes sustainability. The Entrepreneurs for Sustainability group even recognized his efforts in 2011, naming him a Champion for Sustainability. He has also served as a Chef Ambassador for the Monterey Bay Aquarium’s Cooking for Solutions program to promote environmentally responsible fishing and fish farming.
Head to fire, food & drink and prepare to enjoy the natural flavors of grass-fed beef, hormone-free butter, organic produce and syrup tapped from local maple trees. For starters, try dr. katz homemade pickles, nakyrsie fennel salami or tandoor new creation farm pork chop washed down with a basil bourbon lemonade.