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?


Nick Nappi

Executive Chef,  Bar One,  http://https://chefnicknappi.com
Live: South Park
Work: Little Italy
How Long: 4 years

What kinds of meals do you eat at home?
I still believe it’s important to cook at home. I know a lot of chefs and cooks that make beautiful food at work and go home and eat crap. My wife loves anything Italian so I take my time at home to perfect my craft. Homemade ravioli and different types of pastas are always an option.

When you’re out of the kitchen, where do you like to dine out? Any favorites?
We don’t eat out much, but when we do I have a few go-to spots. Tiger Tiger and Panama 66 are a couple of my favorites in San Diego. Chef Sharon Wilson is killing it! I love the “divey” spots though. Rocky’s for a burger and — I know it’s a sensitive subject in San Diego — my favorite spot for a breakfast burrito is Ramiro’s in PB.

I live in the badass, party filled, crazy town aka South Park. LOL. I love this little area. downtown South Park is so cool. My wife loves the shops and we can’t get enough Mariscos Nine Seas fish tacos.

Where do you go for a drink?
Anywhere that has a good bourbon selection. Seriously, I’m not picky at all. Just turn the music down a little. Shit, I think I’m getting old.

How do you like to spend your days off?
Sleep, sleep and sleep. I’m a lucky guy. I married my best friend, I have some of the best homies in the world, and my family is off the hook cool, so when I’m not sleeping I’m spending as much time with all of them as possible. This industry doesn’t give us much time to be around the ones we love so it’s important to squeeze every drop out of the time we do have. Ha! Stupid cooking pun!

What made you decide to become a chef?
The most satisfaction I have ever had is when I feed someone and they tell me how much they loved what I’ve made. What’s more than that is when they tell me how much they enjoyed what I’ve made for them the next day, or the next day. That’s why I decided to become a chef. Connecting to people through food is an amazing feeling and I plan on doing it until my body says stop.

What is your favorite thing about the San Diego culinary scene?
My favorite thing about the SD culinary scene is that there actually is a culinary scene. This city used to be so far behind but now is a complete contender with the rest of the country, and isn’t showing any signs of stopping. I’m so humbled and proud to be a part of this city’s culinary movement.

What kind of change do you hope to see?
I hope to see more opportunities for aspiring restaurant owners. There is a small handful of restaurant groups in this city and they have taken over. No offense to any of them but you can taste the rapid growth and lack of passion. The aspiring chef — who has been dreaming of opening a small place with awesome, quality ingredients — has an unmatched drive and passion that will only be shown on his/her plates.