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Joe Heppe, Executive Chef I.D. Delafield


Dec. 2018

Q. Youíve been at I.d. for over a year now. What are a few highlights from your experience working within the Geronimo Hospitality team?

With seven restaurants and more on the horizon, it provides opportunities for growth to the staff I work with in the I.d. kitchen. In the chef game today, mentorship is just as important as the food that gets produced. The ability to help some of the individuals advance in this career can become just as rewarding as a creating a new dish.

Q. Being located in between Milwaukee and Madison, do you find yourself sourcing your ingredients more from one location rather than  the other?

Having lived and cooked in both cities, Iíve developed great relationships with farmers and small business owners. Iím a big fan of Mushroom Mike and Farm Happy out of Milwaukee. We also love working with Highland Spring Farm and Alsum Farm out of Madison.

Q. What are some challenges youíve experienced using seasonal ingredients with your menu?

Not going to lie, I have been diagnosed by a few line cooks of being a seasonal produce hoarder. Most cooks can attest to pounds of an ingredient getting delivered at the end of its growing cycle, destroying an otherwise organized cooler. As the chef, itís my job to preserve it throughout the next few months and incorporate it into our menu. So, I guess that would be considered a challenge.

Q. Looking towards 2019, whatís getting you excited?

Weíre looking forward to hosting some beer and wine dinners in the upcoming months. At I.d. we have been doing quarterly menu pop-ups, where we throw out our current menu for one night and do something totally different for that night only. These are focused on a specific cuisine or theme and, at times, weíve had some great guest chefs join us on the line. Itís a great night for everyone; cooks, servers and guests. We have an homage to the Wisconsin supper club coming up in February that will kick off the series for 2019!

Located in The Delafield Hotel
415 Genesee St., Suite 1, Delafield
(262) 404-6308


This story ran in the Dec. 2018 issue of: