This is Chef’s Staples, where professional chefs dish on the gear they couldn’t cook without. This week: Chef Tyler Akin of Res Ipsa and Stock in Philadelphia, PA.
Chef Tyler Akin is a Delaware boy at heart. While his culinary career led him to Philadelphia, where Akin is the chef-owner of Res Ipsa and Stock, the chef is making his way back to his native Wilmington. This spring, Akin will be helming the kitchen at Le Cavalier at the Green Room located in the Hotel du Pont, a Wilmington institution.
The chef grew up eating at the Green Room for special occasions, and he aims to preserve some of the establishment’s signature dishes, while reconceptualizing the restaurant into a French brasserie. The influence of the Green Room can be found in the chef’s choice of footwear, an emerald pair of Vans, and his experience throughout the years can be found in his other tools of the trade.
Vans x Hedley & Bennett Reissue UC Emerald Sk8-Hi
“These sneakers are a collaboration between Hedley & Bennett (their aprons are also really great) and Vans. They have treated canvas, which helps repel kitchen spills, increased grip and traction and padded collars, which is helpful when you’re on your feet for a full shift. I picked the emerald color as a nod to our new project, Le Cavalier at the Green Room. The Green Room was an institution in Delaware for over 100 years, so it’s meaningful to be able to give a visual nod to it every day.”
Canon EOS RP Mirrorless Digital Camera
“I love photography, both inside and outside of the kitchen. This model works well under what can sometimes be harsher kitchen lighting and is incredibly helpful when menu planning and visualizing plating for new dishes.”
Bose SoundLink Color II Bluetooth Speaker
“I listen to everything, but really, I’m a rap nerd. Pusha T: best rapper alive, no question. This speaker works well for pumping up our back-of-house team but gives you enough control that the dining room doesn’t need to be exposed to our jam session.”
Williams Sonoma Open Kitchen Bench Scraper
“Hands down my favorite kitchen tool. I use it for portioning dough, shaping pasta, moving knife work into storage containers. At our Southeast Asian restaurants, Stock, we do a ton of knife work — our menu is very veg-forward, so we’re constantly using this tool to move ingredients from our cutting boards into containers without bruising them. This model is really slip-resistant, which is a plus in a fast-paced kitchen.”
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