Quick 6 – Meet Ezzy.

If you were to look up the definition for the word commitment in the dictionary, I’m pretty sure you would find the name Isaias “Ezzy” Anguiano. As a Lead in our kitchens, his commitment to family, friends and to STONEFIRE are second to none, and we are extremely honored to call him family.

Isaias is without a doubt the longest standing Team Member at STONEFIRE. Starting with Mary before STONEFIRE was even a thought, his commitment surpasses many. When asked just how long he has been working with the Harrigan family, Ezzy replied with a smile, “I stopped counting after 30 years.”

His dedication was evident upon my arrival to the restaurant, as I found him working hard behind the grill, and with a little (or a lot) of nudging, I was able to drag him out to the patio for our interview. As we sat down, I learned that this humble, hardworking father of two can truly touch you with his thoughtful answers and encouraging stories of growing up in Mexico with 7 (yes, 7!) siblings. I learned quite a bit about Ezzy’s story, but what I loved most is learning that family values are at the core everything he does.

Team Member: You’ve obviously done an incredible job raising 2 [independent] kids. What is the key to strengthening a family?

Ezzy: That is a good question. I never want them to feel like they need to leave. In the Mexican culture, we like to keep our kids close. You know, they are still my babies, and I don’t want to see them go, so we [he and his wife, Anna] make them feel wanted.

TM: Since you’re the king of all things grill…Tri Tip, Chicken or Baby Back Ribs?

Ezzy: I like all of them. I don’t know which one I like most. We eat chicken a lot, but I always like eating the Tri Tip and Ribs. When I go on vacation for a few weeks every year, I always want STONEFIRE. You miss it when you’re gone.

TM: What is one thing you learned from your dad that you’ve tried to pass along to your kids?

Ezzy: I think one thing he taught me was how to work. My dad was a farmer, and he worked everyday. I learned that from him.

TM: Did you and your dad cook at home? What was his best meal?

Ezzy: My family is very traditional, so I learned how to cook from my Mom. When I go on vacation to visit her, she always makes my favorite meal [chile rellenos], and even though I am old, she likes to say that I am still her baby.

TM: I’m sensing a theme here 🙂

TM: When you were a kid, what did you want to grow up to be?

Ezzy: Growing up, I always dreamed of being a truck driver. I never thought I would be a cook. That was always considered girls’ work, and the boys would go to the farm. But, when I was younger, I started working as a dishwasher, and I slowly made my way up to being a Kitchen Manager.

TM: What is your favorite thing about working for STONEFIRE?

Ezzy: I think my favorite thing about working for STONEFIRE is having fun! If you don’t have fun, you will look for something else or you wouldn’t be happy. If you have fun, you will be happy and smile all the time.

For the record, this is a guy who smiles A LOT 🙂 We couldn’t be more grateful for Ezzy’s loyalty, passion and incredibly hard work over his countless years with us.

 

 

Si fuera a buscar la definición de la palabra “compromiso” en el diccionario, estoy muy seguro de que encontrará el nombre de Isaías “Ezzy” Anguiano. Como uno de los jefes en nuestras cocinas, su compromiso a la familia, sus amigos y a STONEFIRE son segundos a ninguno, y nos sentimos muy honrados de llamarlo familia.

Isaías es, sin duda, el miembro más mayor de nuestro equipo en STONEFIRE. Comenzando con María antes de que STONEFIRE siquiera era un pensamiento, su compromiso supera muchos. Cuando se le preguntó cuánto tiempo ha estado trabajando con la familia Harrigan, Ezzy respondió con una sonrisa: “Me dejó de contar después de 30 años.”

Su dedicación fue evidente a mi llegada al restaurante, como lo encontré trabajando duro detrás de la parrilla, y con un poco (o mucho) de codazos, tuve la oportunidad de sacarlo al patio para nuestra entrevista. Cuando nos sentamos, me enteré de que este humilde padre, trabajador de dos realmente te puede tocar con sus respuestas bien pensadas e historias alentadoras de crecimiento en México con 7 (sí, 7!) hermanos. Aprendí un poco sobre la historia de Ezzy, pero lo que más me gustó es el aprendizaje que los valores de la familia están en el núcleo de todo lo que hace.

Team Member: Usted ha hecho obviamente una increíble trabajo criando a 2 niños [independientes]. ¿Cuál es la clave para el fortalecimiento de una familia?

Ezzy: Esa es una buena pregunta. No quiero que se sientan como que necesitan salir. En la cultura mexicana, nos gusta mantener a nuestros hijos cercas. Ya sabes, no dejan de ser mis hijos, y no quiero verlos partir, por lo que [él y su esposa, Anna] hacer que se sientan queridos.

TM: Es conocido como el rey de todas las cosas de la parrilla … Tri Tip, Pollo o Costillas?

Ezzy: Me gusta todos. No sé cual me gusta más. Comemos pollo mucho, pero siempre me gusta comer Tri Tip y las Costillas. Cuando me voy de vacaciones por unas semanas cada año, siempre quiero STONEFIRE. Lo echa de menos cuando se va.

TM: ¿Cuál es una cosa que aprendió de su padre que usted les ha tratado de transmitir a sus hijos?

Ezzy: Creo que me enseñó a trabajar. Mi padre era un agricultor, y trabajó todos los días. Eso lo aprendí de él.

TM: ¿Usted y su papá cocinaban en casa? ¿Cuál era su comida mejor?

Ezzy: Mi familia es muy tradicional, así que aprendió a cocinar de mi mamá. Cuando me voy de vacaciones a visitarla, ella siempre hace mi comida preferida [chiles rellenos], y aunque yo soy viejo, le gusta decir que todavía estoy su bebé.

TM: Estoy sintiendo un tema aquí 🙂

TM: Cuando eras niño, ¿qué queria ser?

Ezzy: Siempre soñaba ser un conductor de camión. Nunca pensé que iba a ser un cocinero. Eso siempre fue considerado el trabajo de las mujeres, y los caballeros irían a la granja. Pero, cuando era más joven, empecé a trabajar como lavaplatos, y poco a poco me abrí paso hasta ser un Manager de Cocina.

TM: ¿Cuál es tu parte favorita de trabajar en STONEFIRE?

Ezzy: Creo que lo que más me gusta de trabajar en STONEFIRE es divertirse! Si usted no tiene la diversión, se le busque otra cosa o que no sería feliz. Si usted tiene diversión, será feliz y sonreír todo el tiempo.

La verdad es que Ezzy es el tipo que sonríe mucho 🙂 No podríamos estar más agradecido por la lealtad de Ezzy, su pasión y trabajo muy duro durante sus innumerables años con nosotros.

xo – STONEFIRE Grill

Quick 6 – Meet Elodie.

Meet Elodie! As a valued member of our Catering Office Team for the past two years, Elodie brings her genuine heart of service to our guests and fellow Team Members alike. In honor of Mother’s Day this week, we’re thrilled to share a little more about who Elodie is for us and her family.

It was very evident when I spontaneously popped in to visit the Catering Office that Elodie, with the phone ringing off the hook in the background, made a point to welcome and wish me a good morning. Her cheerful attitude and eagerness to live out the “Happy to Serve” mantra is incredibly contagious and sincerely appreciated by those around her.

After sitting down with Elodie, I discovered that this mother to Dylan (7) and Audrey (2), wife and dedicated member of the STONEFIRE Grill family is extremely busy, and she wouldn’t have it any other way.

Team Member: As a very busy mother and business woman – how would you describe your time in both roles?

Elodie Barnes: At work, I am in a fast-paced environment, meeting deadlines all day and assisting guests in planning various events, both large and small. Once I leave the office, I am still busy, but in a different way. I am room mom for my son’s class, team mom for my son’s baseball team, and always running after my 2 year-old girl, who is currently potty training.  My evenings are busy with cooking dinner, helping with homework and extra activities for both the kids. I wear many different hats, and all of them keep me busy, fulfilled and happy.

TM: What has given you the most joy as a mother?

EB: The greatest joy is watching my kids grow up everyday and becoming their own individual person. It is fun to watch the characteristics that they pick up from their parents. My daughter is a mini me – very outgoing and talkative. With my son, he turns more mature and handsome everyday and is just like his dad. I also love hearing my kids laugh! They are so happy and innocent, and the sound of a child’s laughter is priceless!

TM: Tell us a funny “guess what my kid did” story about Dylan or Audrey.

EB: Last week, my 2 year-old took a blue crayon and drew all over the big screen TV and  floor. Not sure how to get it off the TV, but the screen looks cracked. I mentioned it before, but my daughter is potty training…enough said.

TM: If you could travel anywhere in the world for a week, where would you go and why?

EB: I would go to Barbados. I read a book as a child, and it has always seemed like a mystically tropical island that is enticing.

TM: What is your favorite thing about the STONEFIRE Culture?

EB: That we have fun at work! We have a great Team atmosphere, and we thrive both individually and as a whole.

TM: Do you have any recipes committed to memory that you learned from your mom?

EB: Crepes, a traditional French snack. Add a little jam or Nutella and you have a delicious treat.

TM: What is one piece of advice you learned from your mom?

EB: Always stay true to yourself and follow your heart.

xo STONEFIRE

Quick 6 – Meet Sonia.

Meet Sonia! As a dedicated member of the STONEFIRE family for the past 10 years, we are excited to share with you what we love most about Sonia!

Sonia joined our West Hills team in 2005 and worked in the pizza station until she was asked to transfer to our Orange County restaurants. From there, she was quickly promoted to Kitchen Manager. Over the next three years, she assisted in making our Fountain Valley and Irvine locations the success they are today.

After the opening of our Chatsworth location in 2007,  we asked Sonia to bring her skills to our newest location, and she gladly accepted the challenge. In the seven years since Sonia joined the Chatsworth Team, she has watched STONEFIRE Grill continue to grow and was excited for her role to do the same. She has graciously accepted a Front of the House management position and will be starting very soon!

Before my interview with Sonia, I had heard about her start with the company, her dedication and the fact that she is [currently] one of two female Kitchen Managers. As I sat down with her and heard her speak about the love she has for her son, Alonzo, and her fellow team members, I learned quickly that the calm disposition, happy spirit and killer smile was only the beginning of who she truly is!

Team Member: What is your favorite STONEFIRE Menu Item?

Sonia Hernandez: I have a bunch! I mean, I love our food. The BBQ Chopped, South of the Border, Steak and Cheese and Healthy Hybrid. But if I had to choose one, it would be the BBQ Chopped.

TM: What is your favorite childhood memory?

SH: I was nine years old and my mom and dad were at the hospital with my newborn sister. She had to stay in the NICU after she was born and we [my brother and I] hadn’t seen her yet. As my brother and I we were walking back from the store, we saw my mom and dad in front of the house, and we both froze, because my dad had forbidden us from going to the store on our own, thinking we were going to get in trouble. As we got closer, my mom had a big smile and bent down to show us that in her arms was my baby sister. They were so excited to have us all home that they didn’t notice we had broken their rule. I just remember being so happy to see my sister for the first time.

TM: I know you have an adorable son named Alonso. What would you say is the most rewarding part about being a mother?

SH: I would say a bunch of things. I love seeing him smiling and being happy. Spending time with him and watching him do all these things and grow makes me happy. I’m ok with chasing him around all day. Babies learn from us and our lives, and if he can grow up in a good environment with family, I will be happy.

TM: What dish is your favorite to prepare at home?

SH: I have so many! I love Mexican food like chile rellenos and different pastas like Lasagna.

TM: What has your time at STONEFIRE taught you?

SH: I’ve learned a lot of things. Working side by side with everybody like we are a family is important. I think that will make you have the strongest team and the happiest people. Make them feel that you care about them and show them that you are happy to be here and enjoy what you do; it will be an example for them. They will enjoy it, too!

 

¡Conoce a Sonia! Como miembro de la familia dedicada STONEFIRE durante los últimos 10 años, ¡estamos muy contentos de compartir con ustedes lo que más nos acerca Sonia amamos!

Sonia se unió a nuestro equipo de West Hills en 2005 y trabajó en la estación de pizza hasta que se le pidió a transferir a nuestros restaurantes en Orange County. A partir de allí, fue rápidamente promovido a Kitchen Manager. Durante los próximos tres años, ella ayudó a hacer que nuestros restaurantes de Fountain Valley y Irvine el éxito en la actualidad.

Después de la apertura de nuestra restaurante Chatsworth en 2005, le preguntamos a Sonia para llevar sus habilidades a nuestra restaurante nuevo, y ella con mucho gusto aceptó el reto. En los siete años desde que Sonia se unió al equipo de Chatsworth, ella ha visto STONEFIRE Grill siga creciendo y estaba emocionado por su trabajo hacer lo mismo. ¡Ella ha aceptado amablemente una posición de FOH Manager y será a empezar muy pronto!

Antes de mi entrevista con Sonia, había oído acerca de su inicio con la empresa, su dedicación y el hecho de que ella es [actualmente] nuestra única mujer Kitchen Manager. Cuando me senté con ella y la escuché hablar sobre el amor que le tiene a su hijo, Alonso, y sus compañeros de equipo, aprendí rápidamente que la disposición tranquila, espíritu felíz y sonrisa increíble eran sólo el comienzo de lo que ella realmente es.

TM: ¿Cuál es tu comida preferida del menú STONEFIRE?

SH: ¡Tengo un montón! Es decir, me encanta nuestra comida. La ensalada BBQ Chopped, South of the Border, Steak & Cheese y Healthy Hybrid. Pero si tuviera que elegir uno, sería la BBQ Chopped.

TM: ¿Cuál es tu recuerdo favorito del juventud?

SH: Tenía nueve años y mi mamá y papá estaban en el hospital con mi hermana recién nacida. Ella tuvo que permanecer allí después de su nacimiento y que [mi hermano y yo] aun no había visto. Cuando mi hermano y yo estábamos caminando de la tienda, vimos a ellos en frente de la casa, y los dos nos congelamos, porque mi padre nos había prohibido ir a la tienda por nuestra cuenta, pensando que íbamos a meterse en problemas. Mientras nos acercábamos, mi mamá tenía una gran sonrisa y se inclinó para mostrarnos que en sus brazos era mi hermanita. Estaban muy emocionados de tener a todos en casa que no se dieron cuenta que había roto su regla. Sólo recuerdo estar tan feliz de ver a mi hermana por primera vez.

TM: Sé que tienes un hijo adorable, Alonso. ¿Cuál dirías que es la parte más gratificante de ser una madre?

SH: Diría un montón de cosas. Me encanta verle sonreír y ser feliz. Pasar tiempo con él y verlo hacer todas estas cosas y crecer me hace feliz. Estoy bien perseguirele a él todo el día. Los bebés aprenden de nosotros y de nuestras vidas, y si es capaz de crecer en un buen ambiente con familia, voy a ser feliz.

TM: ¿Cuál es su plato preferido preparar en casa?

SH: ¡Tengo tantos! Me encanta la comida mexicana como chiles rellenos y pastas diferentes como lasaña.

TM: ¿Cuál ha sido su momento a STONEFIRE te enseñó?

SH: He aprendido un montón de cosas. Trabajando muy cerca con todo el equipo como somos una familia es importante. Creo que va a hacer que usted tiene el equipo más fuerte y las personas más felices. Hacerles sentir que usted se preocupa por ellos y les muestra que usted es feliz de estar aquí y disfrutar lo que haces; será un ejemplo para ellos. ¡Ellos disfrutarán, también!

XO STONEFIRE Grill