The Recipe is PAZAZ™

pazaz baking pan cooling rack
If the dream is big enough… the facts don’t count!

Before I unveiled this amazing product line of kitchen tools I did the research to find a niche that would allow me to expand the current market place and bring to the end consumer a product that outdistances the competition. In researching this market place and determining which products to choose I looked for a combination of products that would work in concert with each other. Each tool would become better if it was used together to create an unparalleled culinary experience.

That is when I decided upon the Non-Stick Silicone Baking Mat, Heavy Duty Aluminum Baking Sheet Pan, and the Steel Mesh Cooling Rack. This is a perfect symbiotic relationship where one product compliments the other… but more importantly brings out the best when purchased as a complete package.

I reached out to over one hundred manufacturers and then drilled it down to twenty that would provide the quality and price combination I was looking for. I exacted a detailed regiment of testing which included but was not limited to extreme heat and cold, continuous use, and finally ease of cleaning/dishwasher safe.

While I was contacting manufacturers I was also deciding upon a brand. I wanted something that reflected the importance of bringing something special to the recipe. Something that added an important ingredient where the end consumer would say, “Wow!”.

I thought about how magic would, above all other resources or applications bring that type of reaction. Then it came to me… “PAZAZ™” The Magic of Cooking. Now I had the concept I had to create the brand symbol. This would be difficult for me as I have trouble drawing a stick man.

That is when I heard of Design Contest. The formula with Design Contest is to set a dollar amount that would attract quality graphic designers from around the world. All I would have to do is set the parameters in as much detail as would be required for them to understand what my goals were. Then, after they understood what the brand represented they could take it from there. The contest was active for 10 days before a beautiful design came from an artist from Bangladesh. After a little tweaking the symbol of the brand was in place. The winner of the contest from Bangladesh then won the money I had offered as incentive for creating this wonderful design.

In the meantime after testing the kitchen tools I relied on extensive communication with a myriad of manufacturers to see which one could provide the exact dimensions and quality branding I required, always keeping in mind the most important component, the end consumer.

I found a fantastic manufacturer that would provide the dimensions I required so that they would be suitable for any standard oven. This, while fitting together like a Chinese puzzle to seamlessly provide even heat distribution as a conduit to complete the perfect chefs creation.

What I love most about this brand is not only the quality it represents, the effort it took to create this brand, the way we package it, but also the cook book I wrote that is included with every purchase. These PAZAZ™ recipes reflect another aspect of attention to detail that for any dinner party helps bring PAZAZ™ “The Magic of Cooking” to your very special culinary event.

This blog is sponsored by PAZAZ™ bringing the “Magic of Cooking” to the discerning chef.

It Really is About the Journey!

it really is about the journey

I’ve heard many writers wax poetic about the wine and food business. There are many books that reveal secrets about food and wine that lead to one compelling conclusion:

The more you learn the more you realize the less you think you know.

I’ve been in the restaurant/hospitality business my whole life. I’ve worked from coast to coast, in the south, north, east and west. Each place I’ve worked has afforded me the opportunity to meet wonderful people that in some way shape or form has added to my culinary/hospitality “Journey”.

Learning about the attitude of different parts of the country towards food and wine has broadened my horizons and given me real life perspective that weaves itself into the everyday work I enjoy.

In the east I learned about the wines of the finger lakes and farther north east that story book town, Niagara-on-the-Lake and their magical ice wines. And then there’s the seafood that is indigenous to the eastern seaboard, and the commitment by local and world renowned chefs to bring the freshest ingredients from the farm to the table.

In the south I learned about the importance of specific cultures from Cuban to Hispanic and Cajun that create a tapestry of family dishes morphing into the commercial fair of the area exploding with spices and flavors I had never experienced before.

In the north I learned about honey, cultivating mushrooms, beautiful cheeses, and craft beers. These different products enlightened me to the love each artisan felt for their god given talent. If its a meal, a product, a gift each aforementioned experience is about the commitment to excellence that transcends price and pays homage to the caring nature and virtuosity of those so called to their craft.

In the west (where I grew up) I began the “Journey” thinking salmon was a round fish. The reason is because my mom prepared the salmon patty from a can shaping it into a perfect round circle.

I saw my first salmon (the whole fish) when I worked at the Caprice in Tiburon. I had never tasted anything so fantastic as that initial salmon dish (an employee meal) served with hollandaise sauce accompanied with scallop potatoes.

In the west I also learned about wine and food on a whole new level. Owning, managing, and being a server at some of the finest restaurants in the San Francisco Bay Area taught me the value of service and how attention to detail should not be an after thought but a primary ingredient in the creation of a memorable dining experience.

Through-out my travels I was blessed to witness the depth of each artist’s focus and passion, usually encompassing a specific field. This magnetic and transcendent energy gives me hope that all of us will find something we do for work that provides the inner peace associated with a blessed journey through life.

This blog is sponsored by PAZAZ™ “The Magic of Cooking” kitchen tools for the discerning chef. Please go to to order these amazing kitchen tools tested by experts and found in the restaurants of 3 star Michelin Chef Jean George and Famous Bay Area Chef Michal Mina.

Let’s Pretend

lets pretend pazaz premium bakeware

When you’re a kid one of the greatest things to do is to pretend. Let’s pretend we’re on a desert island searching for buried treasure pursued by pirates. This scenario was heightened by the books turned into movies in the 50’s and 60’s written by Robert Louis Stevenson. The one that comes to mind is the children’s classic, Treasure Island. The Jolly Roger, a black flag with the symbol of a skull and cross bones was emblematic of this exciting and adventurous time.

The swashbuckling tales of conquest, romance, mystery, and of course violence brought a certain amount of intrigue that lived in the imagination of young boys. Acting out those tales took us to another level of “living in the experience”. This is only one example as I remember building (with my building blocks) forts, cities, and castles to promote epic battles within the confines of my room.

I loved building tree forts, playing capture the flag, and pretending to hit imaginary home runs to win game seven of the world series. It seems that these exercises were invaluable to promote thinking out of the box and extend the realm of possibilities latter in life.

The best scenarios of pretending had nothing to do with expensive toys, heightened technology, or some app or video game. This was real life within a framework of make-believe that fostered and enhanced the best part of our childhood. The ability to escape outside our lives to places, people, and events that stretched our imagination and formulated our belief in things we could not see.

I believe its important to step back and enjoy those innocent ventures into fantasy as a way to release the tensions of today and relish the pictures we’ve painted in a much simpler time. It’s funny how, at the time, it was so easy to dream and fantasize about a myriad of things to stretch ourselves beyond what we thought was possible.

When I was in the second through the 4th grade almost every report card had a note inserted in the comment section, “Tends to daydream, needs to apply himself more to his studies.” Then I read my best friends report card and it basically said the same thing.

Perhaps Disney had a greater impact than we thought promoting wooden puppets that spoke, fairy’s that flew, and knights that exclaimed, “Chivalry is not dead.”

Regardless of all of the places we’ve traveled in our mind the simple truth is that believing in things we can’t see, feel, or touch is not a bad thing. On the contrary, growing up in a simpler time expanded our horizons and benefited our imaginations. This property of a slower paced world helped our generation take what was impossible and create the possible eventually building watches we could talk into, spaceships we could fly to the moon, and unparalleled communication devices.

Build your dream around the knowledge that whatever you can imagine to make this world a better place for yourself, your family, and all those around you… is possible.

This blog is sponsored by PAZAZ™”The Magic of Cooking”. Kitchen tools for the discerning chef. Please visit to purchase the Non-Stick Silicone Baking Mat, Steel Mesh Cooking Rack, and the Heavy Duty Aluminum Sheet Pan. Bring some PAZAZ™ into your life!

Happy New Year from PAZAZ™

happy new year from pazaz

And so the ritual begins. Isn’t this the time of year that we are motivated to lose weight, vacation more, and see all those from last year we promised to visit the year before?

I love rituals because they become the constant we are familiar with and brings a sense of peace without the stress of the unknowing or the mystery of stepping outside our comfort zone. Each holiday has a family tradition and the tradition makes it easier to concentrate on whats really important, our catching up with those we see very seldom or the connection with those we embrace as family.

But what if this new year we stepped out of that comfort zone and reached for things we thought outside the framework of possibility? We spend less on things we don’t need to save for those things that stretch “the zone” and create another layer of our story that we can look back and say…”Yes, I did that”!

Lets start with the easy reach, because you can’t just dive in to the deep end of the pool. Little towns within a three hour drive that you’ve been meaning to visit but have provided an excuse (a thinly veiled lie wrapped in reason) that seemed logical at the time.

As each adventure becomes another page in your story you find accomplishment that is satisfying and rewarding. This accomplishment can’t be measured in dollars and cents but in the self-gratification of personal growth.

Next you venture on a plane or by car to a city you’ve heard wonderful things about that peaked your interest because of your own love for sport, music, theatre, restaurants, etc. This journey becomes an event centered around a spectacle bringing that inner smile that only comes with accomplishment and personal gratification.

As your friends wonder, “What’s going on with _____?” you become a beacon for a story that is shared because of the experiences that translate to the people you’ve met, the things you’ve seen, and the moment you’ve expanded your horizons. The TV becomes a secondary device rarely visited anymore because of your new found sense of adventure. Your stories take on the magic of discovery and the passion for life that’s magnetic and compelling.

Next you decide to venture outside the country to the place of your family origin or a place known for a particular type of culture, wine, food, music, or natural beauty… or all of these combined into one historic life changing event.

As we look back on life I don’t think any of us would say, “I wish I worked more!” No, we would always wonder about the experiences that we missed because of a reason we can’t define that seemed so clear from a position of fear of the unknowing.

Carpediem! Seize the moment and that will become the vision for your future. Happy New Year PAZAZ™ style and may all your visions expand your horizons bringing the kind of joy that lasts a lifetime.

This Blog is sponsored by PAZAZ™”The Magic of Cooking” kitchen tools for the discerning chef. Visit to see the video’s, personal story, and purchase the Heavy Duty Aluminum Baking Sheet Pan, Non-Stick Silicone Baking Mat, and the Steel Mesh Cooling Rack.