When Kevin Garvin hangs up his chef’s hat, he comes home to a cozy kitchen in the Park Cities. Fully equipped with a Wolf cooktop and a second refrigerator just for beverages, it’s perfect for entertaining.
Garvin, executive chef at Neiman Marcus, said some of his favorite kitchen accessories include cutting boards — he owns 12 — not including his custom John Boos island.
“We are big on cutting boards. We use them like crazy,” he said. “The best way to clean them is to put kosher salt on it and rub with half lemons. Finish it off with mineral water.”
His favorite appliances are his vintage waffle makers, which can be found inexpensively at estate sales.
“They get so hot,” he said. “Extra crispy on the outside while still soft on the inside. Even if we don’t need one at the moment, we still buy them, because we don’t want to run out.”
The Garvin family’s counters are adorned with vegetables from their ranch in East Texas, which includes more than 30 tomato bushes, as well as squash, zucchini, pepper and cucumber plants. Some of this year’s harvest has already been pickled and given out as gifts to friends.
If you’re going to spend your money on one important piece, Garvin suggests an oven-stove combination.
“I’m a big fan of gas stoves with an electric oven [that has] a convection, a griddle, and grill attachments,” he said. “An electric oven is the best for baking — they give you an exact temperature without fluctuating.”
Humbly, Garvin admitted, “our kitchen isn’t anything fancy — it’s simple and functioning. We built it in 2006, and it’s still working for us.”
Editor's note: This is one of three stories on chefs' home kitchens that appeared in the July 26 edition of Real Estate Quarterly.