Edouardo Jordan of Bar Sajor is the only Washington-state chef in the running for Food & Wine magazine’s “The People’s Best New Chef” award. He was nominated in the Northwest & Pacific category along with six Portland chefs and three from Hawaii.
The restaurant in Pioneer Square is usually referred to as another enterprise by talented owner Matt Dillon, but reviews from the start have also called out Jordan’s skills. Providence Cicero noted that chef de cuisine Jordan had worked with Dillon at Sitka & Spruce, and that both were fond of edible oddities.
“Thus, chrysanthemum greens blended with pine nuts become an intriguing pesto…Spruce tips flavor cured salmon, and the noteworthy pickle plate includes things like parsley root, kamut, bitter kale and young green almonds,” she wrote. Last year Bethany Jean Clement of The Stranger named Jordan “the best chef in Seattle you’ve never heard of,” and wrote that “you do not get much more up-and-coming in the world of food than this.”
Food & Wine highlighted Jordan’s cooking philosophy (“Don’t mess up a good ingredient,”) his Southern roots, and a career that began as a server at Bennigan’s, with later higher-end stops at Per Se in New York and The Herbfarm in Woodinville. His quintessential dish was listed as “Quillayute River king salmon cured in honey and chamomile with poached and raw rhubarb, crème fraîche and eighty-percent rye bread.”
You can vote for him over here.
I wrote some of my beefs about online voting popularity contests (this one in particular) over here, but Jordan, like last year’s winner Brendan McGill, wholly deserves the nomination. I already find myself handicapping the chances, torn between being offended that more Seattle contenders weren’t named and wondering if the Portland and Hawaii votes will be split multiple ways and up Jordan’s odds. At the least, his name has now been widely heard.