On any given day, Alex Sazama could be experimenting with a spicy take on BBQ-sauce-smothered baby back ribs, rolling out a new tequila cocktail with a plate of tuna poke nachos, or putting the final touches on a deliciously modern twist on spinach gnocchetti. As the executive chef at Hospitality Democracy restaurant group, he wears many hats – from Blue Bat’s tequila-focused global cuisine menu, to AJ Bomber’s smash-style burgers and cheese curds, to Smoke Shack’s hearty barbecue, to Onesto’s upscale Italian. “I went to a symposium with other chefs from around the country,” he says. “They were all amazed that I wasn’t restricted to one cuisine all the time. That was an epiphany – to see the endless possibilities in my position.”
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