Chef’s Corner with Wayne Alcaide of The WaterColor Inn & Resort
When thinking of watercolor images, we usually think of beautifully designed pastels and canvas’s of breathtaking images. Try associating the watercolor illustrations with the beach, and you begin salivating about the spectacular beachfront images with the florescent blues of the oceans calmed by the golden sand on the beach. So take this serene image and imagine it in real life..it’s called WaterColor, Florida, yes literally! The quiet beach town is located on Santa Rose Beach on the Florida Gulf Coast (between Panama City & Destin). Just steps away from Seaside, Florida – which you may remember from the movie “The Truman Show” with Jim Carrey, WaterColor is a breath of fresh air and the perfect weekend getaway for even the most discerning traveler.
journeyPod had the chance to check out the WaterColor’s signature restaurant Fish Out Of Water, where we met Executive Chef Wayne Alcaide. We sampled delectable Blue Crab Claws, Florida Hopper Shrimp & Snapper Ceviche on the beachside patio. In total beach mode, we took our time, enjoyed the fresh fare, great view and wonderful company.
For those of you who may not know Chef Wayne Alcade, the culinary master is responsible for overseeing banquet services, in-room dining, retail food outlets and dining establishments on the property, including the AAA Four Diamond Fish Out of Water restaurant. In 2005 Alcaide was named executive chef of Northwest Florida for The St. Joe Company, one of Florida’s largest real estate operating companies. Chef Alcaide believes that being able to procure the freshest ingredients possible is instrumental to the success of any dish. He has developed strong bonds with the fishermen and oystermen who farm the Gulf’s bountiful waters and the local farmers who grow and harvest organic produce there in order to support these local businesses and ensure that WaterColor’s clientele receive the freshest meals possible with the highest quality ingredients.
We snuck into the kitchen and asked the man of the hour a few questions…
1. How has traveling influenced your flavors/recipes?
I like to see how different cultures put foods together, how their seasonality plays into their dishes.
2. Tell us about the menu at Fish Out of Water…
We have a fairly fluid menu that we can print daily, which allows us to put items on that we may not have been expecting ie; fishes just caught or local produce.
3. What 3 things can’t you cook without?
Seasonal vegetables and fruit for a foundation of a menu, passionate growers/harvesters of food, guests that are looking for quality.
4. Is there anything you won’t eat?
There isn’t anything that I won’t try if it is prepared by someone who knows how it should be handled, but that doesn’t mean I would necessarily eat it again.
5. First dish you’ve cooked/mastered…
Sunday morning coffee cake.
6. Strangest request you’ve received from a guest…
There were a lot of strange requests in Las Vegas, kilos of Beluga put out on ice and hardly touched was strange and a waste to me.
7. Who in the culinary world do you admire?
My mom is amazing, she was able to put delicious diverse food on the table every night for a family of 7 on a shoestring budget, and made it look easy.
8. Are you a good customer at other people’s restaurants?
I am a good customer, I keep my pickiness to myself, and I tip well!
9. What advice would you give a cooking enthusiast?
If you don’t love it, don’t even think about it.