Hart’s Culinary Director brings “clean food” to life

March 13, 2014

Andrew Lederman
Andrew Lederman

“I believe everyone has some type of creative outlet. It’s hard to find sometimes. But I found mine in cooking.” Hart’s Culinary Director Andrew Lederman knew from a young age that he’d found his creative outlet.

“I love flavors. I love textures. It’s what keeps me going!”

A Rochester native, Andrew honed his culinary skills at Johnson & Wales University in Rhode Island. He traveled the world expanding his repertoire at the Keystone Ranch Resort in Colorado, and later as Head Chef on Lindblad Expeditions cruise ships in Alaska and Mexico.

At the various ports of call, Chef Lederman learned to place high value on local produce and seafood and meat, working directly with local farmers and fishermen. As Andrew’s culinary career advanced, he developed a taste for what he calls “clean food.”

Andrew in Alaska
Andrew in Alaska

“It’s all about taking basic, fresh ingredients. Take three, four, or five things, and as long as their flavor profiles match up, you’re on the right track,” he says.

Years later, Andrew found his way back home, working in Richardson’s Canal House and later opened his own restaurant in Village Gate. Bodhi’s Café, which opened in 2006 offered a locally-sourced menu blending Mediterranean cuisine with American comfort dishes.

However, meeting the love of his life and starting a family with his wife Sara changed things, just as it always does, and Andrew accepted a position as Executive Chef for the Jewish Home and Summit of Brighton.

San Francisco, Alaska, Colorado Resorts, Mexico, and here in Rochester, Andrew has pursued his passion for good, “clean food” the globe over. As Culinary Director for Hart’s Local Grocers, Chef Lederman will bring this concept of clean food to life using the freshest local produce that we offer in store.

What can you expect from the Hart’s kitchen?

“We’re going to have clean and comfortable foods. Our cold prepared foods bar will showcase an array of grain and legume salads, each with different flavor profiles. On the hot prepared foods bar, we’ll have comfort foods popular in the 1930s and 1940s, when the old Hart’s was at its peak. Lots of casseroles, baked dishes, and meatloaf,” Andrew says.

“We’ll have a daily mac ‘n cheese, too!” Oh boy, he got us there.

“When our customers leave the store, my hope is that their senses are aroused, that they’re excited about food, and excited to try out whatever is in their shopping bag. It’s all about satisfaction. Feeling good about what you eat.”

We couldn’t agree more.

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