Bald Headed Bistro Chef Named One Of Nation’s Best

Friday, January 18, 2013
William “Bick” Johnson, executive chef at the Bald Headed Bistro, has been named as a 2013 Best Chef America in a coffee-table book to be published in March.
William “Bick” Johnson, executive chef at the Bald Headed Bistro, has been named as a 2013 Best Chef America in a coffee-table book to be published in March.
The executive chef at Tennessee’s famous Bald Headed Bistro is receiving national attention for his commitment to excellence.

William “Bick” Johnson – a fixture at the Cleveland, Tennessee restaurant since opening day on Sept. 7, 2004 – received notice in January that he would be included in the book 2013 Best Chefs America.

The book is regarded as the ultimate reference guide for chefs and is published each year to showcase the top chefs in the United States as selected by their peers.

For the 2013 edition, over 5,000 chefs were interviewed. 

“I was surprised by the honor and am very humbled,” said Mr. Johnson. “The Bistro has earned a reputation as being one of the nation’s most sophisticated high-end restaurants, but to be included on this list of the top chefs in America is something I didn’t expect.”


Mr. Johnson said the Best Chefs America book will be available online and in bookstores in March. Alongside the best chefs, the book will feature information on emerging trends in the restaurant industry, interesting ingredients and other culinary happenings in the United States.

“A night at the Bald Headed Bistro is a dining experience unlike any other and Bick deserves a great deal of the credit,” said Josh Weekley, the Bistro’s executive vice president and operating member.  “Bick works hard to ensure our guests enjoy a full-range of senses, from the unique western ambiance of the Bistro to the elegant dishes.”
 
Mr. Weekley said Mr. Johnson joined the Bistro team after the restaurant’s founder, Allan Jones, conducted a nationwide search in 2004 to find an executive chef. Mr. Jones, a Cleveland native, has received national attention for his outspoken nature, generous philanthropy and unapologetic love of his hometown.
 
Mr. Johnson formerly served as executive chef for a Caribbean restaurant on the island of Saba in the Dutch West Indies and has also helmed kitchens in British Columbia, Seattle, and San Francisco.
 
Mr. Weekley said Mr. Johnson’s creativity keeps Bistro patrons coming back again and again.
 
The restaurant's elegant menu infuses the flavors and style of Jackson Hole, Wy., into a charming Southern setting, he said. 

The restaurant’s signature dish is the “BHB Filet,” which is prime tenderloin rubbed down with a secret blend of herbs and spices and then placed on a hickory, wood-fire rotisserie for 45 minutes.
 
“The tenderloin is then cut into 6 or 8-oz. portions, placed in a double broiler and cooked to a guest’s specifications,” Mr. Weekley said.  “The filet is topped with beurre monte prior to serving. Once you taste it, you will simply never forget it.”
 
Mr. Johnson, a graduate of Rhodes College, originally planned on becoming a teacher. He said his plans changed after dining at an outstanding French restaurant.
 
“I then forgot about teaching and became an apprentice to a European master chef,” Mr. Johnson said. “I worked my way up to sous chef and the rest is history.”
 
Mr. Johnson is a member of the American Culinary Federation and is a Certified Executive Chef. He is a Chef Rotisseur with the Chaine des Rotisseurs of Chattanooga and holds the office of Vice Conseiller Gastronomique.

The Bald Headed Bistro is at 201 Keith Street in the Village Green Town Center. The restaurant’s reservation line is 423 472-6000.


Shogun – Rules The Roost

Lois and I talked Phil into going out to dinner with us and trying a Japanese place close to them on Gunbarrell Road called Shogun. I have eaten sushi there before, but had never written about it. A young lady led us to a table quite different than where I sat before and I never knew this part existed. It was one of those tables where they cook in front of you. I really wanted ... (click for more)

Bella Vita, Old Chicago Are New Restaurants; The Camp House Moves To MLK Boulevard

Four restaurants were given beer permits Thursday morning at the meeting of the Chattanooga Beer Board. Two are new to Chattanooga. Bella Vita, 1400 Cowart St., will serve “Southern infused Italian” food with an extensive five-page menu. There will be a cabaret style show held twice monthly, which the owner Tammie Taylor said would be something a little different for Chattanooga. ... (click for more)

Erlanger To Proceed With Manager Bonuses In 2 Steps; Considering Employee Performance Incentive Plan

Erlanger President and CEO Kevin Spiegel said Wednesday night that the hospital plans to proceed with $1.7 million in manager bonuses in two steps. Current participants in the incentive program will receive 50 percent of the approved 2014 performance plan this month. The remaining 50 percent will be paid to the management group in July 2015. At the same time, Mr. Spiegel ... (click for more)

Man Shot In Chattanooga On Wednesday Afternoon

Chattanooga Police said a man was shot Wednesday afternoon. At approximately 3:16 p.m., Chattanooga Police responded to a local hospital for a person shot. P olice were advised that a male victim arrived suffering from a non-life threatening gunshot wound. O fficers are attempting to locate a crime scene at this time. Chattanooga Police ask anyone with ... (click for more)

A Letter To The NAACP

I believe when a "unarmed" man is evil, he will try to beat a police officer on his head in hopes to knock him out, in hopes to kill him. We saw the bruises on the officer's face.  This evil force tried to take his gun away from him , Proof was in the autopsy.  Why did Michael Brown  try to take his gun away from him? Exactly, to kill the officer.  ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Advice: Just Be Normal

Matthew Kerlin, by his own admission, claims to be just a normal guy. But I am of the opinion, after reading his speech following Samford University’s Winter Commencement exercises, that the university’s Assistant Dean for Spiritual Life is a bit more than that. Dr. Kerlin knows college kids well and his advice to the most recent flock of America’s graduates resonates with brilliance. ... (click for more)