Chef Q&A: Richard Brown, Bull & Bear


Richard Brown is Chef de Cuisine at Bull & Bear, a French-influenced steakhouse located inside Waldorf Astoria Orlando.

What’s your favorite cuisine to experiment with? My personal favorite cuisine to explore and cook is modern Italian. I love being able to incorporate parts of French and Italian cuisine to express myself through food at work and at home.

What’s your favorite local restaurant other than your own? I have a lot of respect for the team at Kadence and what they’re doing. They have amazing talent and are generating a lot of excitement.

What’s your go-to meal at home? Ricotta cavatelli with my version of a more sophisticated Amatriciana Sauce. I make my own pasta and pancetta and then use pepperoncini, jalapenos and really good Parmesan Reggiano.

Where do you shop locally for interesting ingredients? I live in Tampa so I do most of my special ingredient shopping at Mazzaro’s in St. Petersburg. When shopping in Orlando, my go-to shops are Fresh Market, Whole Foods and Lucky’s.

Which kitchen gadget could you not live without? My two prized possessions are my grandmother’s pasta roller and her cavatelli maker. I use these as much as much as possible and can’t live without them. I also adore my Vita Mix Blender and my PolyScience water batch circulator

What was your favorite bagged lunch as a kid?  My favorite bagged lunch as a kid was a scrambled egg sandwich on Wonder Bread with American cheese, unless my mom put ketchup on it….. I can’t stand ketchup.

What’s your most guilty junk-food pleasure? I have a terrible sweet tooth so any sweet pastry is a guilty pleasure, but nothing more in my life is a guilty pleasure than M&M’s and really good ice cream…..thanks Ben & Jerry’s!

What 3 things are in your fridge at all times? Farm eggs, Plugra butter and really good cheese. These three items can be used in so many applications from savory to sweet dishes, and not to mention… who doesn’t need really good cheese in their life! When I bake bread at home these are the best three ingredients to have.

Is there anything else about yourself you’d like to share? I love all types of cuisine and because I live in Tampa I get to watch two culinary scenes grow and develop at the same time. I have favorites in both cities that inspire me to push my team at Bull & Bear and myself to be the best. We have so many great restaurant professionals and wonderful up-and-coming restaurants that you can’t help but get excited for food in Orlando and Tampa. I’m very lucky to be part of this industry.