Dalila Ali Rajah
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The Gay Couple That Might Just Win Top Chef Masters

The Gay Couple That Might Just Win Top Chef Masters

Top Chef Masters Cast 0
What’s your best food memory?
Mark: Being guests of honor at a family’s riverside home on stilts for an elaborate dinner in Battambong, Cambodia. We were served many courses of fish from the river nearby. We ate fruits, greens, and vegetables from the area around the house. We drank coconut milk fresh from the coconut. We had just picked watermelon. We had Johnnie Walker Black, which we brought as a host gift. It was an unforgettable evening with three generations of one family. Rarely have I felt so honored and in the simplest of surroundings by the kindness and generosity of our friends’ family.

I love that Arrows has topped all these “best of” lists and you’re in Maine. Ever have doubts about opening a restaurant in Ogunquit, Maine?
Mark: I knew it could be a struggle but we were determined, although a bit afraid, to make it work here. The culinary scene in Maine in 1988 was ready for an infusion of creativity and updating. Now Maine has gone through a real culinary revolution and has become one of the hot places to visit for new and interesting takes on Americana.

You own what Gourmet called the 14th top restaurant in the country. Do you feel pressure to stay at the top of these lists or does it come naturally?
Clark: And Arrow is one of the top 40 restaurants in the Gayot survey as well.  Mark and I have always just worked hard to make Arrows the best restaurant it could possibly be.  Every day we work to make it a better restaurant.

Are foodies gay friendly? We see a lot more gay chefs on TV than other occupations but is that because there are more gay cooks in the kitchen or because of the visibility afforded to chefs on TV?
Mark: In my experience I feel that there are really few gay chefs. Some of us are very high profile but overall it is a very small percentage of chefs that are gay.

When did you start cooking?
Clark: I started cooking at the age of 7.  I was a bit of a latch key kid as my parents both worked.  When I got home I started baking cookies. We sure had a lot of cookies!

What’s the biggest surprise about doing the show?
Clark: The biggest surprise was the terrific camaraderie amongst all the chefs as well as the crew.

Mark: That it was so much fun.


Watch videos of the duo on the show below.


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