Chef Ryan Andre in the Spotlight

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chef2bBy Mia Freneaux;  Photos contributed by Keely Andre
​​Central resident ​Chef Ryan Andre started his career as Valedictorian of his Louisiana Culinary Institute class.  From there he worked at a variety of Baton Rouge and New Orleans restaurants, culminating at the Commander's Palace!  "It was definitely the highlight of my cooking career," Chef Ryan reminisces.  He started out with desserts there and left as Lead Saute' Line Cook.  In 2014 he joined the team at ​the brand new​City Pork ​Brasserie on Jefferson Highway​ as ​Executive​ Chef.
Here Chef Ryan was really able to stretch his creative wings.  He shared, "I love local inspired dishes.  I like to spin that with International flavors.  I change up the menu according to the season, using as many local food items as possible."  Ryan's favorite cuisine style is Asian, "I keep a variety of soy sauces and fish sauce stocked."
A look at City Pork's menu shows the breadth of Chef Ryan's abilities.  ​The "Wild Boar Flautas" starter​,​ the "Umami Bomb​" ​burger​ (​featuring king oyster mushrooms, shiitake mushrooms, charred poblano peppers and avocado mayo​), ​the "Rabbit and Dumplings​"​ plate​ (with​ pork gyoza and crispy cabbage slaw)​, ​and the "Chicken Fried Duck" plate (served with smoked brie mashed potatoes, broccolini, and apricot gastrique), all give tempting hints at his diversity​. 
Chef Ryan shared that his house flooded last August.  "We're still bouncing back after the flood," he admitted.  Which makes his achievement all the more impressive – ​Ryan​ won the ​2017 ​"Best ​Chef​" award in the 12​th​ annual 225 Magazine Best Of Baton Rouge Award​s​.  This is a big affirmation of his talents.  "​Over John Folse!  ​What an honor!" he enthused, "It's a big win for us as a restaurant and personally for my career."​  His next goal?  "Win the James Beard Award!" he laughed.​
In addition, Chef Ryan has appeared on the Food Network with Chef Michael Simon and will soon be on another Food Network show.  Just last Thursday, he was the guest speaker at our local CCA meeting, instructing everyone on the proper way to prepare fish.
Chef Ryan moved to Central 12 years ago with his wife, Central High graduate ​Keely (nee Butler)​.  19 year old stepdaughter Reagan Laborde​ (also a CHS graduate)​ and 9 year old son Kael are some of his biggest fans.  He credits his family's support for his success, and gives God all the glory.  "I wouldn't be here without the support I have at home."