Chef Drew Andrade —
Raised in Memphis, TN, Executive Chef Drew Andrade of Tanuki credits his mother and her home cooking as the source of inspiration for his career. Committed to becoming a chef, Andrade jump-started his career at the age of 13 when he he landed his first job in the kitchen at Equestria where he helped the prep cooks, learning the ropes of a professional kitchen. Upon completing his education at MTSU in Nashville, Andrade moved to Los Angeles, determined to further his position in the culinary landscape. He landed a job as sous chef at Wolfgang Puck’s famed Beverly Hills hotspot Spago where he was first introduced to Japanese influence. Seeking out the opportunity of a lifetime, Andrade relocated to Spain where he worked as the mentee of Martin Beresategllia at his restaurant, which received an impressive three Michelin stars. Following his time in Spain, Andrade further cultured himself with a move to Dubai where he secured the opportunity to open Novikov. Ready to head back to the states, Andrade made his move back to Miami where he now serves as the Executive Chef at Tanuki.
Who is your biggest culinary influence?
Emeril Lagasse because I started watching him when I was a kid, and he’s Portuguese like my father.
If you weren’t a chef, what would you be?
A lawyer, probably a defense attorney.
What are the staple items in your pantry?
Pickled jalapeños and Tabasco sauce.
If you had to pick one food item to describe yourself, what would it be?
What was your biggest takeaway from your first kitchen job when you were 13?Learning to work with big personalities and being so impressed by the dedication people had.
What’s your favorite dish to cook at home?
What’s your favorite curse word to use in the kitchen?
What’s your favorite thing about living in Miami?
The weather is my favorite thing about Miami.
What is your favorite restaurant in Miami right now (other than your own)?
KYU or Shake Shack.
What does a guy from Tennessee, who’s lived and cooked in both Spain and Dubai, know about sushi? Where did you learn the craft?
Sushi had to be self-taught, lots of books and YouTube videos!
Why do you think Japanese food is so popular right now?
It will always be popular because it’s fast and light and so many different flavor combinations can be created.
Rolls, Sashimi, or Nigiri?
For me, nigiri.
How is Tanuki different from other sushi restaurants in Miami?
Tanuki is different because people who work here have such a passion for authentic Japanese food. Also our head sushi chef is amazing.
Describe the new Tanuki fall menu in three words…
In Miami weather doesn’t really dictate a fall season, like other cities. For Tanuki, I would say “fall comfort food.” We have started using more pumpkin and fois gras in our menu.