Chef's Tales

Short Stories: JJ Johnson’s Breakout Meatopia Moment

JJ Johnson has made the Cecil and its jazz-nightclub offshoot, Minton’s, into must-visit spots in Harlem. One of the critics who helped put him and the restaurants on the map was Josh Ozersky, the late food writer who also founded Meatopia. Ozersky enlisted Johnson for a Meatopia that was part of the South Beach Wine & Food Festival a few years back, giving the chef his choice of meat to cook with. Johnson chose goat, but then he got a dreaded call from Ozersky: Another chef had decided to use goat, so Johnson would have to select a different protein. His unorthodox choice shocked Ozersky, as Johnson explains in the latest installment of Short Stories.