Preaching the gospel of authentic Southern Cuisine

Published Wed, Sep 15, 2004

He’s "the man behind the kitchen door" when the atmosphere is comfortable in a Georgia homestyle kitchen. It is here where the secrets of authentic Lowcountry cooking! "The man behind the door" can teach in just three hours how to recreate the magic of Savannah in your own kitchen.

"The man behind the kitchen door" is Chef Joe Randall, a 42-year veteran of the hospitality and food service industry. The depth and range of his experience and his dedication, have earned him the respect of professional chefs as well as restaurant managers and owners. He is noted for his capacity to teach, guide and advise others in the practical aspects of food quality and profitable food-service operations. Randall has worked his way up through the ranks from Air Force flight line kitchens to executive chef post at a dozen restaurants, including the award-winning Cloister Restaurant in Buffalo, N.Y., and Baltimore’s Fishmarket in Maryland.

The magic of Savannah and the city’s love for good Southern cooking lured Randall to Georgia. Prior to his cooking school, he was director of food services at the Savannah College of Art and Design.

Chef Joe Randall’s cooking school is a facility where he can use the food of the South, the Lowcountry and Georgia’s Atlantic Coast as a vehicle to dispel the myths and misconceptions many visitors and locals alike hold about Savannah. In short, he wanted to be able to bring the great treasures of this coastal region as close to people’s homes as their own kitchens. With a style all his own, Randall preaches the gospel of authentic, Southern cuisine to all comers. He shares his heritage and Southern culture with visitors from all over the world.

Randall has owned and managed a catering firm and provided consultant services to restaurant operators. His broad experience, coupled with a talent and enthusiasm for helping others learn the craft and systems of restaurant excellence, resulted in his serving on the faculty of four schools.

Randall’s uncle, a Pittsburgh restaurateur and caterer Richard Ross, gave him a taste for a culinary career, he then completed apprenticeships under notable chefs.

It is his undying devotion to his heritage and the cuisine of the South, and his love of sharing it with others that has made Randall so successful and truly joyful. The love of cooking and eating traditional and contemporary Southern food, and sharing it with whomever will stop long enough to listen and taste is just in his bones.

Just a whiff of the rich, spicy aroma drifting from a steaming pot of Savannah Red Rice and Sea Island Smothered Shrimp, with stone-ground grits and you won’t be able to wait until it’s ready.

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