Friday Five with Hugh Acheson

Happy Friday! We’re wrapping up our weeks with a new tradition: Friday Fives! We’ll be quizzing some of our wonderful AFW chefs on their favorite dishes, books, restaurants, and more. We’re kicking the series off with Hugh Acheson, award-winning author and chef/owner The Florence, The National, Empire State South, 5&10, Spiller Park.


1. What’s your favorite easy dish or cocktail to make?
A salad of any type. Any time. I just like salads. Right now I am eating one with crisp kohlrabi, serrano ham, shaved manchego, little gem lettuces, chickpeas and a harissa vinaigrette.
Pimm’s Cup. Easy and light on the alcohol. The cucumber garnish counts as a vegetable for the day.

2. What inspired you to become a chef?
Hospitality, food, and beverage are endless topics that pique my interest each and every day. It is a great occupation for me, as I bore easily.

3. What’s your favorite restaurant (besides your own)?
Joe Beef, Montreal. It rules. So real. So fun. And it’s in my favorite city in North America (besides AUSTIN OF COURSE).

4. What’s your favorite cookbook or book about food?
Richard Olney’s Simple French Food. Seminal. Olney wrote beautifully.

5. What are you most excited about doing / seeing/ tasting at AFW?
Winning the taco contest. I got this.