On a cursory level, food is simply fuel, nourishment, and sustenance. However, a cuisine–otherwise known as the style, techniques, and traditions of a particular country or region–often transcends and bridges cultural divides. The best way to experience and learn about a country, its people, and culture is through its cuisine, and Iranian cuisine is certainly no exception. Simultaneously simple and deliciously complex, Persian culinary traditions and techniques have been enjoyed and passed down for generations. At this year’s Tirgan, Chef Hoss Zare and Chef Hamid Salimian share their inspirations and influence on Persian cuisine. You wouldn’t want to miss this rare opportunity to learn how these two renowned chefs put their own twists on traditional dishes and to get a glimpse of their distinctive art of Persian cuisine.
Chef Hamid Salimian
Born in Iran, Chef Hamid Salimian grew up on the edge of the Caspian Sea and learned about traditional Persian cuisine amid his father’s citrus orchards and dairy farm. Soon after his family relocated to Vancouver, Canada, Hamid enrolled in culinary and pastry arts at Vancouver Community College for his first formal training as a chef and graduated at the top of his class. He learned the essential skills to combine the heritage of Persian cuisine with influences of the Pacific Northwest and began to define a uniquely creative and contemporary approach. During a successful apprenticeship at Vancouver’s renowned Sutton Place Hotel, Hamid trained in classic French cuisine and began to explore the world of food competition.
Chef Hoss Zaré
Hoss Zaré is a San francisco–based chef, renowned in the culinary world for his distinctive style that reframes Iranian cuisine to heighten it while simultaneously making it more accessible to the world.He grew up on his family’s century old farm in Tabriz, Iran. In his twenty-five year plus career, Chef Hoss Zaré has established a loyal following while at the helm of several restaurants including Aromi, Zaré Sacramento, and Bistro Zaré. After a stint in the Napa Valley, fate would bring him back to the restaurant where his culinary journey began. Chef Hoss Zaré owned and operated Fly Trap Restaurant from 2008 to 2016. During this time he began to draw from the flavors and memories of his childhood and honed his unique style. Known for his exuberant service and hospitality, or rather “Hoss-pitality”, a term coined by fans and a play on his first name—he often embraces guests with Hossy-Hugs and a smile before any service.
This article originally appeared in the 2017 edition of Tirgan Magazine.
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