Q&A with Jordan Zucker, One Dish, Four Seasons
Where did you grow up /live now?
I grew up in New York. Went to college in Philly. Moved to LA and have been rocking a bicoastal lifestyle (80/20 LA/NY) ever since.
When did you first realize you wanted to be a writer?
Or what first inspired you to write? Definitely not in college – I was a math major because I’d rather do a weekly problem set than weekly paper back then! I think it became a byproduct of creating my own content as an actor.
Where/When do you best like to write?
I’m not a morning person. My brain and personality don’t kick in until midday. I usually write at my desk in my office but can usually get into a zone anywhere if I push myself.
Do you have any interesting writing habits or superstitions?
An old family drinking superstition was that the last drop of the wine bottle couldn’t go to a woman or she’d be an old maid (likely rooted from the old maid card game and also likely created by a man). This has grown tiresome with multiple bartenders around the world and also my bare left ring finger so I’ve been known to abandon its absurdity in recent days.
What do you think makes a good story?
Something that is either relatable or completely novel. Something that is memorable to the audience.
What inspired your book?
I subscribed to the old adage of “write what you know.”
What was one of the most surprising things you learned in creating your book?
How many moving parts there are to the process. I thought I could write it and print it. But the team required to make that happen is extensive.
What do you like to do when you are not writing?
Sports wise I ski and scuba dive. I used to be an equestrian but haven’t seen a stable in years. I go to Jazzfest every year in New Orleans. I’m going to Burning Man for the first time this year. Food. Wine. Music. Sports. I’m a social being and collect friends all over the map so I’m usually cultivating some connection or relationship along the way.
Who are some of your favorite authors?
We can start with my namesake – it’s a literary character – Jordan Baker from F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby.
Do you have a bucket list?
What are some of the things on it? World ski tour (still need Alps and Andes). World Chef’s Table tour (we travel to one new restaurant for my birthday every year). Monkey tour of the world (Silverback gorillas, chimps, mandrills, orangutans). Raise a family. Sing the national anthem at a sporting event. Watch a game with Obama. Go skydiving. Learn French. Host a cooking show. Etc.
What is the one book no writer should be without?
Siddhartha by Hermann Hesse