Dallas McGarity: The Fat Lamb Modern Kitchen and Bar in Louisville - Louisville Article
Dallas McGarity: The Fat Lamb Modern Kitchen and Bar in Louisville Follow @nyccitiview
In October 2016 Dallas and his wife Laura opened The Fat Lamb Modern Kitchen and Bar in the Highlands neighborhood of Louisville. His passion for high quality local ingredients as well as his creative, but approachable style of cooking allows him to create cuisine that is elegant and unique while showing off some of the surrounding area’s best ingredients.
Chef Dallas McGarity began his culinary journey when he was a young child growing up in rural South Carolina. He has been an invited guest chef at the James Beard House in NYC four times, participated in many regional and national food & wine events, and has been a fixture in the Louisville local culinary scene.
How did you develop your love of cooking?
One of my first memories a professional kitchen was when I was dishwasher at a country club in Orangeburg SC. I was about 15 years old. I had just started working and it was the first Sunday that I worked there. Sundays in the south are for church and big afternoon meals with family. When you are working, you don't get the afternoon meals or the family time. It takes commitment to work in the restaurant industry. The staff would cook for about 300 people every Sunday and this was no exception. After we all did our duties in the kitchen, we sat down around a table and had a late lunch together. It felt like a family sitting down for Sunday supper and I will never forget the feeling of family that I had that day. That is what made me want to cook and work in a professional kitchen. It is a pleasure to bring people together over food and create lasting memories that mold us into who we are.
How did you end up in or choose to work in Louisville?
I actually moved to Louisville in 2004 sight unseen. I had no idea that Louisville had such a great food culture and was such a fantastic progressive city. The first view I had of Louisville was driving in through Cherokee park in mid May. Such a beautiful time of year and a gorgeous introduction to the city. I moved here with a girl that I was dating at the time and I was young and naive. Of course it didn't work out with her, but I fell in love with the city, met my wife, and now we have two awesome kids that I couldn't think of raising anywhere else.
What is your favorite thing about cooking?
I really love the look on the faces of people eating the food. I like to see the experiences and know that I am making people happy with my cuisine. I guess that's why The Fat Lamb is such a great space for me since the kitchen is completely open and I can see almost the entire dining room.
What's your favorite thing about living in Louisville?
I think that my favorite thing about Louisville is the diversity. I like that there are tons of different cultures in our city and that the community as a whole is so accepting of them. Like I said, I couldn't think of raising my children anywhere else.
Your thoughts on the future of Louisville's foodie scene?
I think that Louisville has come a very long way since my arrival here in 2004. There are so many more local, independent, and creative restaurants here now and I can only see that growing. There are so many chefs here that are amazing and so many local producers, farmers, and purveyors that Louisville's food scene will only get bigger and better.