We all know that testing skis isn’t a bad gig, but we also know that a full day of top-to-bottom laps will leave you thoroughly exhausted by day’s end. To ensure that each of our testers is on point every morning, we enlist the help of a few professionals. Chef Nate has been cooking up family dinner at #FreeskierFest for three years now and we could hardly imagine what it would be like without him. Due to our evergrowing posse, Nate decided to enlist some help of his own this year and brought on Red, a colleague from the road.
L: Chef Nate with his game face. R: Chef Red taking all the credit.
Nate and Red have nearly 18 years of cooking experience that has taken them across the globe, touring with acts like Tool, Black Eyed Peas, Linkin Park and even Prince. You might guess that this lifestyle would produce some great stories, and you’d be right. Whether it’s watching Prince hide dinnerware around the hotel room to mess with the staff or accidentally ingesting heroin in Thailand, a few minutes of your time would not be wasted by asking what these guys have been up to lately.
Their experience in the kitchen does not go unnoticed by our testers who show up to the “food house” each night to enjoy a spread of various cheeses, homemade hummus and crackers just before a buffet fit for royalty is laid out and quickly devoured. If somebody isn’t quite full after that (though they should be), Red is obliged to whip up a artisan grilled cheese on the fly for them.
Thursday night is definitely the highlight as it’s the annual #FreeskierFest Thanksgiving dinner. Turkey, stuffing, cranberry sauce, the whole nine. Doubtful anybody will still be hungry after that one… Once the crew has had their fill and thoroughly trashed the house, it’s time to head downtown. As the crew slowly gathers their belongings, there’s speculation on where we might find the nearest shot-ski. Doesn’t particularly matter, though, because when this rambunctious crew rolls into a joint, they’ll make their own party. At least they aren’t drinking on an empty stomach. “To the Red Onion!”