Florida native Emily Dillport began her career with the Ritz-Carlton 12 years ago. Before moving to Arizona, she worked for their properties at Orlando, Palm Beach, Aruba, St. Thomas and New Orleans.
In 2016, Dillport took on the role of executive sous chef at the Ritz-Carlton, Dove Mountain, Southern Arizona’s only Forbes Five Star and AAA Five Diamond hotel. On April 9, 2019, she became executive chef. Now, she leads the teams behind CORE Kitchen & Wine Bar, Ignite, Cayton’s Burger Bistro, Turquesa Latin Grill, TO|GO, in-room dining, and resort banquets.
“I would like to continue introducing our guests to what can be foraged locally , and to different ways to enjoy these delicacies,” Dillport said in a press release. “From local pistachios to Cholla buds, I think Arizona has so much to offer that many people aren’t aware of… and there is a magic about this area that is unexplainable.”
The first time I had a steak cooked correctly. I was 18 years old and the chef of a restaurant I worked at as a busser cooked me a steak after working hard during a very busy night. I’ll never forget the plating, the perfectly cooked filet – the sauce was very complementary. It was simply perfect.
I had never experienced such refined food in my life at that point. It was simple but altering for me. I realized that I wanted to make food taste and look that good and I wanted to learn everything I could to get better each and every day.
That started six months of asking to help in the kitchen. Six months later, I made it to the dish room, and six months after that, into the kitchen.
It’s exciting to see spring back and all of the food that is coming along with it. I’ve enjoyed a lot of citrus the last few weeks. Our beautiful citrus orchard produced an amazing harvest that we have been eating and using in every way imaginable; from juice, to just the fruit, to marmalade, to vinaigrettes, to marinades. And the list goes on.
Scrambled eggs. A lost art if you ask me. There is nothing better than when your eggs are perfect.
We are playing around a lot with house fermentation and aging sauces. It’s a very interesting science in the culinary world that really enhances flavors, but introduces you to what something is and what it can become.
Hands down the southern Florida coast. There is nothing better than eating fresh Florida grouper beachside. I could do it everyday.
It’s so funny, I get this question often. I think people are so surprised to hear a chef’s guilty pleasure; it’s never what they expect. I’m addicted to Ruffles potato chips and Reese’s peanut butter cups, eaten at the same time.
Biscuits and bacon gravy (grandmother’s recipe), som tum and Thai sticky rice, rock shrimp in the shell with drawn butter (when they are at peak season), Hogtooth snapper sashimi and a warm pan of brownies with a pint of vanilla ice cream, finished with espresso.
Jackie Tran is a Tucson-based food writer, photographer, culinary educator, and owner-chef of the food truck Tran’s Fats. Although he is best known locally for his work for Tucson Foodie, his work has also appeared in publications such as Bon...