Get to know Chef Brandon Hanna
A huge part of what makes the Moviehouse & Eatery great is, well, the eatery. When opening a new dine-in theater we knew we had to have the best crew on the block. After an extensive search for the best chef fit to take on the Moviehouse’s challenge, all fingers pointed to one man. After hearing his story and one taste of his culinary skills we knew we had to have him on board to help make the Moviehouse great.
Born in Lubbock, Texas and raised in southern New Mexico, Chef Brandon Hanna’s roots in southwestern cuisine run deep. However, he attributes his flair for the exotic and the start of his epicurean journey to a study abroad as a young man to Norway where he first encountered unfamiliar dishes. That and collegiate studies in the sciences led Chef Hanna to an early career in food services.
He had no formal training in the industry, but instead worked his way up the chain of command from busboy as a young man to head chef today. Although, Hanna attributes much of his success and knowledge to his culinary mentor Chef Bullington of Austin, Texas.
Now, on to the questions…
What do you do at the Moviehouse?
“My role at Moviehouse is to make sure that we have a well rounded, high quality menu that drives people back for the food, not just because it’s attached to a movie. We have a beautiful bar and lounge and welcome guests to join us there whether attending a movie or not. Some of my highest moments so far have been when guests have just come in for lunch or dinner. That’s what we want to be. One of the best restaurants not just a good in-theatre restaurant.”
How did you shape the Moviehouse’s menu?
“I crafted the menu to be fast, easily eaten in the dark, fresh and little on edge and different from what you may be used to getting when you go to a theater. Some of the dishes that I think that illustrate that point are the fresh dredged double dip shrimp and po’boy. The Chicken Lollies (fresh fried chicken with a handle), The Cavatappi and Cheese, The Caprese Press and the Trails Treat which features bourbon seared bananas.”
What’s fresh to the Moviehouse kitchen?
“Fresh is in the ingredients list, like not having any dried herbs and roasting and grinding all of our spices in house. Fresh is in cooking a dish from scratch when you order it. Fresh is also in keeping the menu small and using items in strategic places so that you run through it and the product doesn’t stay in the building for more than 36-48 hours.”
What’s your favorite part about working at the Moviehouse?
“Creative Freedom, the ownership and management team, fast paced enviroment and the chance to work for something that has no ceiling. I am just fortunate to be a person that loves what he does.”
And lastly, what’s your favorite movie?
“One favorite movie, no way. I am a movie lover and my tastes are all over the place. Top three today at this moment…The Color Purple, True Romance and The Black Book.”
Check out Chef Hanna’s specially crafted menu only at the Moviehouse & Eatery.