Each month, we ask one of San Diego's chefs:

What do you do and how do you eat when you're out of the kitchen?

Carl Schroeder

Proprietor and Chef,  MARKET Restaurant + Bar, Banker's Hill Restaurant + Bar,  http://marketdelmar.com
Live: North County
Work: Del Mar, Bankers Hill
How Long: San Diego native

What kinds of meals do you eat at home?
When I’m at home, I like to make very clean and somewhat simpler versions of the same types of dishes I make at MARKET Restaurant + Bar. I have a mesquite grill that I really enjoy using, and I eat a lot of local fish and veggies.

When you’re out of the kitchen, where do you like to dine out? Any favorites?
I like to go out to eat for things that I don’t ever cook at home or at the restaurant. So it’s usually a really good ethnic restaurant of some sort. I have a Peruvian spot that I really like and I go often to Alforon, a Lebanese restaurant by San Diego State. Their food is fantastic and they use spice incredibly well.

Where do you go for a drink?
I really enjoy a good beer more than a cocktail, so I like to go to the local breweries. I always drop into Societe whenever I’m up that way.

How do you like to spend your days off?
I try to spend as much time as I can with my kids when I’m out of the kitchen. The restaurant industry can be difficult on the “family unit,” so I take advantage of long mornings and down-time with my family.

What made you decide to become a chef?
Growing up, I was an avid fisherman and we always ate what we brought home. Even as a kid, I would try to find new ways to prepare things and I liked to look at cookbooks for inspiration.

What is your favorite thing about the San Diego culinary scene?
It has been great to be a part of the burgeoning local food scene. I like that there are a lot more chef-owned restaurants in San Diego than there were 10 years ago.

What kind of change do you hope to see?
I hope that we continue to see the same growth as we have been experiencing… keep the small indies coming. I think that we can honestly say now that you can eat just as well in San Diego as you can in other major food cities.

Photo by Martin Mann