Q&A with Evansville chef Jeremiah Galey

by | People, Q&A

Born and raised in Wadesville, Ind., just outside Evansville, Jeremiah Galey cut his teeth in the industry, starting as a dishwasher at 17. Nineteen years and a lifetime of experience later, he finally ventured into ownership at Bad Randy’s Hot Chicken and BBQ Lounge on Franklin Street in Evansville. His creative approach comes from nearly two decades of experience instead of a culinary degree. “We’re unabashedly out-of-the-box” is a sentiment he uses frequently. Bad Randy’s food and drinks are rooted in tradition but approached from chef Jeremiah’s unique perspective.

What made you want to become a chef?

There wasn’t this “a-ha” moment most people ever expected to hear. I just started in the industry because I needed a job. I fell in love with the relaxed atmosphere of my first job at Red Geranium’s Conference Center in historic New Harmony, Ind. I was hungry to succeed, so I took advantage of every opportunity I came across and created my own. I was fortunate to be allowed freedom of creativity at that job, which helped me excel and learn.

What is your favorite type of food and why?

Whatever I’m in the mood for that day. I love hot chicken and BBQ. I also love all the different types of pizza. There aren’t many types of food I don’t like.

Where do you get your inspiration?

Coming up in the business, I had a hunger to do well and succeed, to prove to myself that I wasn’t just full of it. I’m also largely influenced by learning new techniques or different cultural ways of doing things. It gets me excited to work on things from new perspectives. I also love focusing on the history behind methods and cultures and showing appreciation for that aspect in new creations.

What is your favorite thing to make for yourself and your family?

At home, it’s usually pizza, BBQ, grilling or something simple on the stove like pasta or Thai basil chicken.

If you could eat anywhere in the world, where would that be and what would you eat?

I can’t pick just one place! Howlin’ Ray’s hot chicken in Los Angeles; Frank Pepe’s and Sally’s pizza in New Haven, Conn.; Rodney Scott’s Whole Hog BBQ in Charleston; any big mercado in Mexico.

If you could choose a favorite place in Indiana, where would that be located, and what would you eat there?

Hot chicken at Bad Randy’s Hot Chicken and BBQ Lounge in Evansville!

What items are always in your fridge?

Beer, oat milk, eggs. Our house-made ketchup from the restaurant. Sparkling water. More beer.

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