#7 Chef Mike Newton – Owner of Newton’s at the Cellar
Chef Mike Newton Podcast Transcript
Neil Dudley: Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to the Pederson’s Natural Farms podcast. We’re so excited you’re here. We look forward to sharing all about this beautiful industry of better-for-you food, meat, protein. We call the podcast the Pederson Natural Farms Podcast Powered by Protein because we’re going to talk all things bacon, sausage, ham, consumers, customers, vendors that support our business, employees that make us what we are, and peers, people that are in the industry competing for your attention and your dollar. And we think that’s healthy and we’re proud of them, so we want to share about them as well. Thank you so much for joining us. Be sure you tune in, don’t tune out, and remember, grab life by the bacon.
Ladies and gentlemen, everybody out in YouTube land, thanks for joining us for this episode of the Pederson Natural Farms podcast. I’ve got a really fun guest on the show today. This month is Bacon Bash, Texas, themed so we’re going to be talking to consumers, customers, vendors, and employees within Pederson’s, well, and the better-for-you food environment that have connection to Bacon Bash. This guy certainly does. Mike, welcome to the show. Thanks for doing this.
Chef Mike Newton: Well, thank you for having me.
Neil Dudley: If you guys can see on the video, Mike’s been through a little ordeal with his arm, so he’s battling that, hanging in there, doing a lot of things, busier than he’s ever been. Why don’t you tell us a little bit about that? And then let’s talk a little bit about Pederson’s pork and how you use it here in the restaurant. We’re sitting in his restaurant here in Stephenville, Texas. It’s Newton at the Cellar. If you’ve never been here, be sure and come. And I guess recent news, you’re going to be pretty quickly able to walk next door or even in here in the restaurant and enjoy an adult beverage.
Chef Mike Newton: Absolutely. You need that in here. I’ll tell you, the arm is I had a shoulder replacement surgery and we had a little mishap during the surgery, a [thick 2:13] bones got in the way. So, I have a little bit of an arm injury with it. But we’re good, we’re getting over it. Incredible doctor, my doctor here is an awesome doctor and did a great job, mobility back in the shoulders, [inaudible 2:24]. It kind of gets in the way of cooking right now a little bit, and I’m not your best patient. I don’t have the patience to be a patient.
Neil Dudley: Right. For those of you that don’t know that are new to maybe Mike and maybe even this podcast or Pederson’s, Mike has been on Master Chef with Gordon Ramsey. He’s had a lot of success on that show as well, I guess, outside of what was it, opening a jar of a caviar or something?
Chef Mike Newton: Fish eggs.
Neil Dudley: Oh yeah, fish eggs. But really did an awesome thing, built- took your, I guess, recognition, even your skills as a chef to another level. So, you’ve been spending a lot of time in the ugly kitchen, your home. I mean, that’s what you call it right?
Chef Mike Newton: I do call the one- I mean, it’s rough as a night in jail. I mean, it’s rough. But we like it, it’s easy to move around and we are going to redo it, but COVID has kind of got in the way of that. And that’s the fact of it is just that winter storm put a final kind of coup d’état on the kitchen by destroying- had some leaking in it. But it’s still functional to work out of, it is fun to cook out of, it is easy to cook out of, and I’m used to it. But we decided we’re going to go ahead and do the remodel on it. And so, it’s just getting the equipment and stuff to do it. So, we’re going to wait until after the first of the year. Plus, we’re building a bar next door to the place. And so, I don’t need many more projects.
Neil Dudley: Well, speaking of all those projects, let’s tell everybody a little bit about the restaurant, what kind of food they could expect to get here, and what about pork chops?
Chef Mike Newton: Well, I’m known for being a steak guy, but I didn’t want to be the one trick pony. I wanted to have other things going. So not only do we do some great- we pan sear steaks. We also brought in an outdoor grill right now. It’s a Santa Maria style grill and we’re doing a little bison. We’re doing a little bit of Tomahawks outside and doing some whole fish. Now we’ve got our Pederson products. We love our ribs, getting ready for Labor Day. We’re going to do our ribs special where for Labor Day weekend, we’ll smoke them all up on Wednesday, and Thursday. You can pick them up on Friday and Saturday. We use Pederson. We love their ribs. We love them. We love all their products. We use them all. We use all the products. One of the things that we do love is we do the bone in pork chop. And that was what really got me on Master Chef. We brine it. We brine it, and then we chicken fry it and we’ll chicken fry it with jalapeno cream gravy. And so, you can’t go wrong with cream gravy. I think you could put it on a shingle, it’d be okay. But not to discredit the Pederson pork. We love that product. We love the- in the restaurant it’s efficient. It’s a fair cost product. So, you can do it for a reasonable price and people love it. Like I said, it got me on the Master Chef. There’s a little bit of loyalty here I have. And the other products, we’ve the boneless pork chops. We use the pork loins, the ribs, and so great products. And they’re local. We like keeping our business local.
Neil Dudley: Let’s talk about that a little bit because I think the listeners will be interested in that, the greater Pederson let’s say fans, or just people that buy our products in LA and all over the country and maybe never have been to Stephenville, but they care about local too. So, I like the idea of what- I want to explore, at least the idea, of what makes local important to you as a restauranteur, as a guy with a brand. Just talk about that a little bit. Why do you even care about local? Why did you even bother saying that?
Chef Mike Newton: I think it is a three-part thing. First of all, I’m supported by my local community. Yes, there are people that come out of the way, which we love, but it’s our local community. And if they’re giving me the opportunity to make off the local community, I want to return it. So, we start with, you know, you’re nothing but 20, 30 minutes away from me, depending on how you drive. And then we have, of course we have like Veldhuizen cheeses, which are great. Stuart does a great job over there. We’ve got some local meat markets, one down in Dublin, Thompson’s Meat. We just heard today we lost a local meat market, Max, sad to see that go. We’ve also got local farmers that are bringing in- Out by me, I live in Lipan, which is about 20 miles north of here, we’ve got a local guy doing our squash and he’s doing melons, watermelons, and peaches. So I think it’s good to put not only the money back into your community, but I think it’s a great thing to keep them going and striving. And for us, we’re getting fresh local products. You hear localvore and all that. And we’ve got a little garden outside. We’re doing our own peppers and some tomatoes; the tomatoes didn’t do too well with the weather this year. But hey, we’re taking a shot at it, we’re learning from it. We’ve got a place locally that we’ll be able to do a five-acre farm next year. The catch to it, I don’t want to do the farming, I want to get someone else to come in and do the farming and we’ll swap out, I guess, let them do it. But getting those local products and cheeses, we have a guy that does a Brie cheese for us too.
Neil Dudley: Well, do you find that your guests in the restaurant value that?
Chef Mike Newton: Absolutely I do. If you ever go to the Rustic in Dallas, they support local. We got we got Steve doing American Eagle cheese down in down in Lipan. So yeah, I think people do. People want that. I think they assimilate to we’re watching our food to get so far away being processed. We want it fresh. We want it to where it comes from. We want to know the pesticides, herbicides, the rain that we’re getting. And I like- and those guys, they can do something special for you too. We had a great guy who was doing mushroom farming. He moved up to Colorado – wonder what he’s going to grow there.
Neil Dudley: That is a booming market though. Just as a sidebar, that medicinal marijuana or legalized marijuana has brought a lot of people to the agricultural space that might not have necessarily always understood it or been involved. So, I mean, everybody has their own opinion on it. I think it’s interesting. And any time you get a little attention to the people that are growing things in our country, I call that good.
Chef Mike Newton: I think it’s great. America was established on an agrarian society for 300 years. Then we did a hundred years of an industrial society. Now I think we’re, what, 60 years into an information society. But what we’ve seen, especially with that through this COVID, we’re seeing how many people flock to the country, and people are doing chicken eggs. My wife and I have very few; we have the remnants of a flock that the hawks picked apart. We got through to them, they dropped their eggs and they’re great. And when you ever have a real fresh egg or a fertilized egg, or even a duck egg, it’s a [inaudible 9:09]. And that organic movement that started back in the late seventies, early eighties in California, now you can get these organic, the organic eggs. And we actually have a purveyor though, they’re out of New York, D’Artagnan, they are sending moulard duck breasts, they are 16 ounce, organically grown, great flavor, can’t beat them anywhere else. And then, we’re getting bison from the same. We’re getting wild boar from them. We’re looking for local sources.
Neil Dudley: But you’re not afraid to go get the best either. I mean, I think that’s a fun, happy balance. Local can be great and is great, but even sometimes it doesn’t hurt to venture out to New York or wherever you might be able to find something you couldn’t get just anywhere or that is done just the way you want it.
Chef Mike Newton: Well, they drop it on your front door, too. You get it delivered your front door and you can get it in 24 hours. We got a quail farm, they’re doing our quail for us, and doing all that.
Neil Dudley: Everything- you just mentioned stuff that you can’t find in every restaurant. And that’s one thing I’d like people to think about coming and visiting Newton at the Cellar, let Chef Newton and his team cook you dishes that you don’t find anywhere and everywhere. You’re very, I call it innovative in that way. I think that’s part of what got you on Master Chef is your innovation and just cowboy spin on stuff.
Chef Mike Newton: Absolutely. I like taking the classic French, and we’ve been working on some stuff now. But that’s the beauty of, I hate to say it, no pun intended, but Stephenville was craving for a place like this. And so, we want to deliver. We’ve had some hiccups, don’t get us wrong. But we’re doing a little bit of barbecue.
Neil Dudley: Well, there’s no business that ever goes without a hiccup, it’s just learning. And what I think is so cool, he’s got a BBQ bit parked in the front parking spot. You can’t even park close to the door because the pit and the truck are right there. That’s kind of cool.
Chef Mike Newton: And we use it. I mean, that’s- and we want people, we want people to come in. If you have a suggestion, you want something special, we want to do that special thing. Not just a special, but we’re not real large here. We seat about 50 people. I think we stretched it one-time a little too- I hope the fire department’s not listening to this. But even with the bar opening up next door, we’re going to take it, and we want to not just say it’s an adult bar, but we’re really going to try to make to where it’s that kind of feel from the sixties and seventies, sit down, have a nice cocktail in a nice environment or after dinner, and have something before dinner, or something just even after the golf games, nice and cool in the summertime, that we want to bring it to where you can go, relax and have what Stephenville really [inaudible 11:50]. We’re a college town, and let’s admit there’s a lot of kids going here and there’s a lot of kids that get away from home that want to drink a lot of beer that they weren’t able to drink at home. So, I don’t have that- it’s not the size to do something like that, but it is going to be a nice adult bar, and college kids are more than welcome. We want them to come and have a good time. I think that’s a big thing is, when we started working with you at Pederson’s, I had to look at the products, what can I do with these products? I sat down one evening and I think I came up with 30 products on about four of your products of what we can do. So, I think a lot of people now start looking at not what you can’t do with a product, but what you can.
Neil Dudley: Absolutely. Well, and I think we strive at Pederson’s to be a resource to our customers. Like didn’t Jim come sit down with you and say, okay, how would you like this cut? Show me exactly the way you want it. And we have people that we work with that can help us accomplish that. So, inside the Pederson’s team, as well as in our vendor network or people that we work with, we can pretty much come up with some way to fit what Mike is after. And that’s a lot of fun.
Chef Mike Newton: We’re going to try to do some cooking classes too. And do some things- people will get a pork loin, and my mom used to cook, and my goodness, you had to figure out if she’s cooking that because you want to stop on the way home to get something to edible to eat because they overcook it.
Neil Dudley: Well, I’m afraid that- that’s a big hole in the market or hole in the education of consumers that pork, we just need to somehow quit over cooking it because you cook it medium rare, it’s safe to eat and it’s flavorful. It’s a great experience.
Chef Mike Newton: Brining and doing even the brining on stuff, that’s actually great. It’s just been a- it’s been a great joy to open a restaurant in Stephenville because we are the cowboy capital, but people don’t realize this university employs people from all over the country. And so now you have it to where people are coming in and they’re not just cowboys, we have everything here. Plus we got people, we’ve had people as far as North Carolina, Maine, out of the country, we’ve had some people, and of course, East Coast, West Coast.
Neil Dudley: Absolutely. I think the global world we’re in, you just have a chance to serve people from lots of cultures, give them a fun experience. One of those marketing mantras I carry around or Stacy has drilled into me is people won’t remember what you did or how you did it, but they’ll remember how you made them feel. So those experiences are really important, I think, in the restaurant business.
Chef Mike Newton: Well, and that’s what- we didn’t want to be [stuffy 14:20], we have linen. We’re probably going to move away from the linen even, but my wife keeps – well, I say keep fine, I never went with her. So, I still had the linen. I think eventually we would like to move a little bit away from it.
Neil Dudley: Why? What’s the- talk about linen and a little bit. I always hear this white tablecloth restaurant and it seems like an expense to me. What’s the purpose of it? Let’s give everybody that listens that maybe doesn’t understand what it’s like to run a restaurant, what’s the linen all about?
Chef Mike Newton: Well, I call linen in the first impression, really your front door, and they come in, they see it. For me, if you pull this table up while we’re sitting here, it’s really rough and it’s covering up the flaws and we’re going to change the tabletop. But I think linen gives you a certain amount of formality yet informality. If you’re coming- we have people who come in here, and I’m not a real strict dress code guy because you have everything here, but we do have people come on Friday and Saturday nights. We set the tables up differently Friday and Saturday nights then we do with week. We do roll ups during the week. But we don’t want it to be too pretentious where you can’t come. We have people that come after football games on a Friday night, and the last thing they’re going to wear is a suit and tie. We had a guy come in after they had their kid at football practice, he had a tank top on. I try not to promote it, a tank top, but you know what, I’m not going to say no. We’ve got clients that wear overalls in here, we got guys that were tuxedos in here, ladies that are dressed to the nines and ladies that wear yoga pants, and we’re not going to be that discriminatory. We want this to be a place- and I even had a review that someone complained about the plastic chairs, but I said the plastic chairs are pretty dang comfortable. I mean, the ones that we’re sitting in right now, I would rather sit in the plastic. And I don’t have a lot on the wall. We wanted to focus on the food and service. And we wanted to bring service here. I’m from a strong service background before I ever really got heavy in the cooking. And serve from the left, take from the right. And we don’t stack our plates up on the table.
Neil Dudley: That is so fun to see a service team that knows what they’re doing and just bam, it’s like clockwork. It’s pretty cool. And even if you’ve never experienced that, you should come here and eat one time, just so you get to feel what it’s like to get served that way.
Chef Mike Newton: Well, and we’ve changed our menu up a little bit. We’ve kept the main staples on, but we wanted also, if you want a hamburger at night, I’ll find a way to make it for you. We have them at lunch, and we do a lighter fair at lunch. So, we do our lunches Wednesday through Friday. We do our dinners Wednesday through Saturday, and we do private events. But what we do is we don’t want you to feel like you have to have a steak. Maybe you want to come in. We do a Tomahawk where you can split that, or we’ll do a chicken fried steak special. And we do a hamburger special tomorrow, and we’ll do a po boy sandwich on Friday, and I’ll let those bleed off into dinner. I mean, some people can’t get away for the lunch. I work through my lunch every day.
Neil Dudley: Yeah, right. And some of this conversation makes me think what’s some more value there. I hear this a lot, 90% of restaurants that startup fail. How are you managing to navigate that and stay in business? Are you guys supporting this in some way financially? Is it standing on its own? What’s the trick?
Chef Mike Newton: We are in black. And we haven’t had liquor, but we just got our liquor license and that always helps a little. The big thing that we’ve done is that I’m fortunate enough that I have other endeavors. I believe in seven sources of income and I’m not really drawing a check. And so, but we’re making money, don’t get me wrong. But my goal was, it was an established restaurant, and my rent was not unbearable. We opened up during the COVID; I’m one of the knuckleheads, 58 years old, decides to open up a restaurant during the middle of COVID.
Neil Dudley: Hats off to that one surely.
Chef Mike Newton: So yeah, that one I got. But the big thing is that we’re looking at quality of food and pricing and value of the food. I never want someone to leave hungry. But at the same time, we don’t want you to stuff you so much. And my beef prices have doubled. And pork prices have really gone up since January 21st.
Neil Dudley: Is that a piece of the puzzle you have to just really watch closely? Like even though you don’t want to raise your prices to the customer, the truth is if they want that experience, they want that quality, you have to pay for it. It has to come in a pricing structure that keeps the restaurant whole and keeps that staff paid, all those things.
Chef Mike Newton: We’re blessed because with our Thompson Meat guys, Jeremy at Thompson has been nothing but a gem for us. Like he’ll take our beef tip, he’ll take our leftover fillets, [order it to 18:45] chains, stuff like that. And we’ll clean them. We can use them for beef tips. So, we have that use for that waste.
Neil Dudley: Well, it’s- well sustainability in a way, or it’s just being smart with your food choices and your menu and all those things. So, you don’t end up with a lot of waste.
Chef Mike Newton: And we bargain. We go to Fort Worth to get some of our products, our trout and stuff, which we’ll get our trout. And we don’t- And like we said, I look at profitability not per se margins because I don’t say that we have to keep our food at a 20% or 30% cost. I’m willing to go up a little bit, but let them, if they go to Dallas, maybe that trout costs them $40. Where we can be where it starts with a three. But my profitability though is still greater than- and the steaks have been- but you know, we went up $2 on our steaks since we did. And I said we’ve charged a fair price back then. We’re making a profit. It’s not as much- Profit is not a bad word.
Neil Dudley: I don’t think so. I think it’s part of sustainability, which is a huge topic in our country, especially in this business, Pederson’s, the better-for-you food, sustainability has to have a piece of it that is profitability. You’re able to stay in business. The money needs to make sense because there’s just not enough billionaires sitting around in the world to just give money to every farmer.
Chef Mike Newton: Right, I can’t get my government to give it to me, which I don’t want their money. But I kind of tease about that, right now that we all live in a society that what can we get from nothing? And I can’t, I’ve got to make a profit, but I’m not going to club you in the head. And that’s part of getting back to how does this linen affect our environment? I’m not going to go out and hug a tree and I’m not going to be the guy that you’re going to see on a Greenpeace boat. But I do believe that we got protect, even on my own ranch, we’re getting some sustainable, we are going to a composting material with not so much chemicals. And so, what we see though, that the guys that we use in our organic side of the food, you can taste the difference.
Neil Dudley: I know, see, that’s what I kind of am sad about, or for whatever reason, I don’t believe I have a great palette. So, I think I miss a lot of the nuance of food, just like you were talking about with eggs, how the flavor’s different, you have that skillset to taste it. I know this much, everything I’ve ever tasted is great. I look at people like you that have a great palette as somebody I really want to listen to when they’re trying our pork for, hey, what’s the nuance in that? Is our breed, is our marbling, all those things, I think they’re humane raised in part of the space they have, all that stuff plays into the flavor, ultimately, which is consumers definitely care about.
Chef Mike Newton: Well, and it goes back to what you feed them too. And the French call it terroir, what you get from the ground. And like I just made a dish called [mesaduan 21:47]. And it’s basically, you remember when we were kids, your mom and dad used to get those mixed vegetables, had the carrots, the turnips, the green beans, and the peas and all that in it. It was that mixed vegetable. And they do a dish over there, but they do it, obviously, you cut it and everything, and then they do it with a fresh mayonnaise. I did mine with Pederson’s- I did with a Pederson’s pork that I had smoked. So, I actually took that pork and did a little mirepoix, onions, carrots, and celery, cooked me a little stock down with it, had some brown sugar on that pork when I did it. And then I made a ham stock.
Neil Dudley: I mean, just everything you’re saying sounds so good. And refined. Like, if you just look at Mike, you don’t necessarily see the guy that’s going to speak in French and talk about what he’s been cooking lately, but you have the chops, the skills.
Chef Mike Newton: Well, thank you. And just like that dish, we put a little bit of that pork in there, I made a ham mayonnaise, and so instead of just doing it, I took a French dish that they use an anchovy mayonnaise, it’s really just a mayonnaise based, but we made our own little ham mayonnaise. And I did, and I served it a lot in Langford, over here at the Ford dealership. And a couple of other people came, and they go, wow, that’s really crazy. Not what you’re expecting here. Does it have a place in the restaurant? It does, in a small thing, we’re trying to figure out where to use it. But it had a great flavor and it’s fresh. It’s something you do in summer. And you’re getting your vegetables, you get a little mayonnaise, and mayonnaise is not bad. You know keto-
Neil Dudley: Sure. I think mayonnaise is one of the better condiments. It’s got good fat, egg. I mean, it it’s not- now Miracle Whip might be another question. Yeah, but- Okay, so now all of those things, I mean, just I don’t even know what to tell you, folks, you should go check Mike out, follow him on social media. We’ll link all this stuff in the show notes. If you’re curious, you want to learn more about him, we’ll try to put the links there so you can go watch his- the show Master Chef he was on the first time, all that stuff. We’re also here to talk Bacon Bash and I want to commend Mike. He’s been on our final table judging panel for multiple years, and it seems like every year we get around to the auction, we’re raising money, and Mike shows up and gets involved big time with that, helps us raise money. Where does that come from? Like where does your love for others or desire to give back, where does that, what does that come from?
Chef Mike Newton: My wife always tells me not to talk about it, but when I was raised, I was [inaudible 24:10] incredible father and just a little bit of an abusive family, but then I started on my own at a very young age. I went to work for a great family in Dallas on their ranch. They taught me about giving back and stuff. And then when I went to Master Chef prior to it, six months prior, I had a stroke and I felt that I’ve been fortunate in my life and it’s time to give back. And I think that you give back not just to give it to someone but there’s that outstretched hand so many times and how easy it is for us to walk by it, or is it maybe just reach down, and who knows the circumstances, who knows the situation. So, I always felt comfortable giving back. When we came back from Master Chef, I wanted to raise a hundred thousand dollars for charities. We killed it. And we’re up to over a million now, which I’m not bragging about it, but we- and I am because it wasn’t me that was giving back, we have people that came in and bought our meals and stuff that afford us the opportunity. And it’s helped out a lot of people. And I think that you’re starting to see that now. I think you need to see more of it. We live in a pretty jaded society right now. I think that people are about me. It’s about me movement maybe. Instead of saying it’s me, what can I do for you and how- Because what little I can give back goes tremendously a long way. Not only to the people that may be purchasing the meals or coming into the restaurant to eat, but really to the charities they are helping, whether it’s CASA, Big Brothers and Big Sisters, the Tarrant Area Food Bank, and [inaudible 25:35]. And I applaud people who will take just a little time, maybe it’s only eight hours out of the year, that they go down to the food bank and they help or they step on a Christmas line. That little bit can mean so much for so many. And I’ve been without food. I’ve been homeless for a little while.
Neil Dudley: Now, tell me about that.
Chef Mike Newton: I just moved out at a young age and then I got a little- and I just had to go start. And then I let my mouth write a check my rear end couldn’t cash so I spent a little time. But I want to tell you, I have no regrets. It was probably the best thing that ever happened to me. But what you learn is you look at a different perspective. I wouldn’t wish it on a lot of people. I wouldn’t want that on any of our children. I wouldn’t want it on my wife or any of my family members. But for me, I was young. I could handle myself.
Neil Dudley: Well, it’s your journey. You’ve been through it and now on the other side. I mean, looking back, if you get to a certain maturity, you start appreciating all the tough and good times. I mean, and a lot of times, tough can be a long time. It’s not always just a short time in your life. So, I think all of those– I want to go back before I forget and touch on the giving part. You’re talking about giving, helping. That’s part of what this podcast is doing, I hope, is giving of the information and of the people that we know and work with and I think are so awesome and brilliant and really special. It gives an audience a chance to get to learn about you more, about vendors. We recently did a podcast with our refrigeration vendor. I mean, he’s a guy that totally keeps Pederson’s in operation and you wouldn’t even know about him. 90% of people don’t know there’s a refrigeration guy behind the scenes at Pederson’s making us go.
Chef Mike Newton: He is the busiest fellow right now, I guarantee you. And he’s trying to hustle up parts now, which isn’t too easy either.
Neil Dudley: I just think it’s important that we share the knowledge. Thank you for sharing the knowledge and for everything you do at Bacon Bash. I just know intimately how much you do for us. And we really appreciate you. Thanks for buying Pederson’s product. We look forward to continuing that relationship. I mean, and I think it’s on us to continue to make it good. We have to keep delivering. I think sometimes businesses lose sight of that. Like Mike and I are friends, but Mike doesn’t have to buy Pederson’s pork. We need to deliver a quality consistent product, and the day we don’t, he has to go somewhere else because he’s – what’s the word? – but you must deliver that quality experience to your customers, or they disappear.
Chef Mike Newton: I don’t get a second chance more then likely.
Neil Dudley: That chain has to stay solid.
Chef Mike Newton: And before we leave, one thing before we leave, I did want to say that it’s easy to go to our grocery counters or our bins or where you buy your coolers, sometimes you have to seek out products and seek out Pederson’s, go buy the other companies and pass up on theirs. There’s a country western singer and there’s a guy that does everything, but you know what, go look for that little- stretch your legs a little bit and your eyes and grab that product, see the difference. And I never let cost get in the way of quality and I think you’d be quite pleased too.
Neil Dudley: Oh, well, I appreciate that little plug there and we certainly hope we earn that trial. And we’re here to earn it. We don’t want it to just be given freely. I mean, everybody has a hard-earned dollar and to vote with your dollars is important. Like if you want to see the things that Pederson’s does continue, we need you to vote with your dollars with our products so we can keep doing what we do. Hey, go vote with your dollars at Newton’s here in Stephenville. I keep saying Newton’s, but it is Newton at the Cellar; I don’t know, I want to add that possessive S on there.
Chef Mike Newton: You can go to Newton’s at the Cellar- Newtoncellar.com to make a reservation. And you can go to cowboychefnewton.com to see a little bit. And let us know if we can help you in any shape. If you need to make a reservation, go there. If you need to know more about Neil’s products, reach out to me. If I can’t get to my emails, my wife is. If you need a recipe, it’s not a trade secret. I’ll help you.
Neil Dudley: And we’re here, we’re saying this on every episode, we want to have that conversation with you. If you’re listening and you have questions, there’s more, there’s some piece of this conversation you’d like to know more about, we’d love to hear that from you so we can go deeper. Now you’ve met him, go check him out. I’m telling you right now, keep your eyes on Chef Mike Newton, Cowboy Chef Newton. He’s up to big things and I’m real proud of him. Thanks for everything, Mike.
Chef Mike Newton: Thank you.
Hey everybody. Thanks for listening to this episode of the Pederson Natural Farms podcast. If you don’t mind, go hit that subscribe button and check us out at pedersonsfarms.com. Thanks for listening.
A customer using Pederson’s products in his restaurant – Cowboy Chef Mike Newton displays his culinary skill in Stephenville, TX at his restaurant, Newton at THE CELLAR. Chef Newton sits on the final table judging panel at Bacon Bash Texas and always seems to find a way to raise just a little more $$$$.
Fun fact: Cowboy Chef Newton was a contestant on MasterChef season 8…those Damn Caviar!
(1:41) – Introducing Chef Newton & Newton at the Cellar
(5:28) – What makes local suppliers important to you?
(8:07) – The future or agriculture
(9:39) – The balance of local growers & high quality product
(12:24) – Pederson’s striving to be a resource to their vendors
(13:53) – People won’t remember what you said but how you made them feel
(14:30) – Creating the aesthetic of a restaurant
(17:08) – How is Newton as the Cellar navigating the world today to stay in business?
(19:45) – The importance of sustainability
(20:52) – Chef Newton’s incredible Palate
(23:42) – Bacon Bash Texas!
(25:56) – Mike’s early life and mistakes he made
(26:45) – Pederson’s goal of sharing information to everyone and highlighting our amazing partners
Pederson’s Natural Farms Podcast is produced by Straight Up Podcasts & Root and Roam.