Roger Feely is an accomplished chef, educator and curator of culinary events. With a culinary education that began in the food service work-study program in high school, Roger went on to graduate from Johnson and Wales University at the top of his class followed by training in Spain, India and New Mexico. The chef is a life long student of food and culture and has focused on using whole foods and traditional cooking methods from around the world.
With twenty years of experience, Roger has worked in many kitchens large and small. Starting as a dishwasher at a neighborhood Italian restaurant at 15 and working up the ranks in a number of kitchens and positions. The chef worked his way up from commis to line cook to head bread baker to pastry chef at Donald Barickman's Blossom Cafe and Magnolias in Charleston South Carolina. Barickman is a cookbook author, respected chef, culinary instructor and "creator of low country cuisine". The Flying Saucer brought Roger to San Francisco in the late 90's after cooking in Charleston, Chicago, and Seville, Spain. At the Flying Saucer under the tutelage of Chef Albert Tordjman, Roger began exploring modern cooking methods using global flavors while continuing to hone the classical French cooking techniques that brought him this far.
As founder of Soul Cocina, Roger has gained notoriety among Bay Area foodies for "turning out some of the most polished and straight-up delicious food" (SF Weekly) at his pop up dinners and street food events. The chef uses local and seasonal ingredients to create his signature global street food cuisine, utilizing ecologically responsible practices and materials in every step of the process.
Roger has led cooking classes and has developed culinary education programs for such diverse organizations as Hands on Gourmet (San Francisco), Sour Flour (San Francisco & Chicago), Sur La Table (San Francisco) and The Academy of Culinary Education (Goa, India). He has lectured on topics ranging from farm to table sustainable cooking to the Bay Area culinary scene for organizations like Elderhostel and Cuesa.
The chef has also organized and led a number of community based cooking programs for youths, including The San Francisco Unified School District, YMCA and Beacon. The young participants are encouraged to spend time in the kitchen and to think about where the ingredients come from. They learn how to prepare homemade meals from scratch and communally cook and dine together. The meals are followed by open dialog. Most importantly, the participants are reminded that cooking is fun and that real food is better than packaged food.
Currently, Roger hosts pop up dinners in San Francisco and Chicago and is a guest chef for Lukes Local in the SF Bay Area. The chef has also partnered with Sour Flour as an instructor for bread baking classes that focus on naturally leavened breads in both Chicago and San Francisco.
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