Pot Chef Derek Upton

Pot Chef Derek Upton
cannabis now

“Food is a second language to me,” begins Derek Upton when asked about how he got his start. “I’m Portuguese-Italian, so I’ve been cooking my whole life.” The acclaimed Phoenix-based cannabis chef spent the first half of his career as a touring professional drummer before making the leap into the kitchen full-time a decade ago. But this move off the kit and into the kitchen was driven by an innate love of both food and flower. “When I made the career switch to cook professionally, it was also in the name of cannabis,” Upton says. He explains that even though he’d been a long-time cannabis user, it was his struggles with depression and insomnia that ultimately pushed him to study the plant and its place in his life—and in his food. “One day, something clicked for me, and I realized that cannabis was helping me more than all of the medication I was on put together. That led me to diving into cannabis, understanding cannabinoids, decarboxylation and the [body’s] endocannabinoid system.” Chef Derek Upton has crafted many fine dishes as part of the Elevations series in partnership with The Clarendon Hotel. So, as a newly minted professional chef who was also immersing himself into understanding the science behind cooking with cannabis, Upton was naturally drawn to exploring the plant’s culinary possibilities. “I started experimenting at home, and that led to doing dinner parties for friends and family,” he says. “I fell in love with it. I found that many people wanted the education, wanted to understand cannabis in a different way. What better way is there than through food?” “Food makes the perfect vehicle to show people cannabis.” With this normalizing mission in mind, the chef began hosting a series of private cannabis-infused dinners in and around Phoenix, where he…

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Source : Pot Chef Derek Upton

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