Val studied business administration and math at Iowa State University and is a Certified Public Accountant. She has run the numbers at a variety of companies, including retail, hospitality, high-tech, construction, nonprofit and insurance.
Council Bluffs, Iowa
FIRST RESTAURANT JOB
LAST RESTAURANT JOB
ALTERNATE UNIVERSE CAREER
FAVORITE LATE NIGHT SNACK
BEST MEAL EVER
My mom's pasta sauce. There is something magical about home-grown tomatoes in the midwest.
AFTER WORK HANGOUT
Mostly I would rather be home than anywhere else, spending time in the kitchen or hanging out with my husband Jonny and our dogs. The Tin Hat is our favorite neighborhood watering hole.
FAVORITE SEATTLE RESTAURANTS
Senor Villa, Monkey Bridge, Pop Pop Thai, Staple & Fancy, The Yellow Leaf Cupcake Co.
RESTAURANT PET PEEVE
I can't eat at a place with dirty light fixtures hanging over the tables. What else hasn't been cleaned?
WHAT DO YOU LOVE ABOUT SEATTLE?
Those days where the breeze is just right and you can smell the sea air. Also the general lack of mosquitos here is pretty amazing!
FAVORITE PLACE IN THE WORLD
Early mornings at Lake Crescent on the Olympic Peninsula.
MEMORABLE KITCHEN DISASTER
Small electric oven, grossly overfilled cheesecake ramekins.. what a mess! That was a multi-stage cleanup effort for sure.
CAN'T LIVE WITHOUT
My kitchen. It is my favorite place, my stress reliever, my outlet.
WHAT'S ON THE NIGHTSTAND?
I am a little obsessed with World War I novels.
WHAT'S ON THE IPOD?
All over the place. Willie Nelson, Garth Brooks, the golden oldies station on Pandora, throw in some Beyonce now and then. Death Metal when I'm on a tight deadline.
FAVORITE MOVIE QUOTE
Old man, you give those dogs another piece of my food and I'm gonna kick you 'til you're dead! (Moonstruck)
WHAT HAVE YOU LEARNED?
I used to tell people I wanted to retire and open a diner after years of working in corporate business, like it would be a nice slow-down for me. That is probably the dumbest thing I have ever said out loud!