For this week’s chefs to shelves, Mark Morrison said it best: It’s the Return of the Mac - the mac and cheese, that is.
A moment of inspiration. It's something all great ideas have in common. And while some EUREKA moments come from unlikely places like flying kites in lightning storms and apples falling from trees, other times the signs are a little… more straightforward.
For Myles Powell, his leap onto the shelves of local stores around the DMV was largely inspired by a celebrity chef celebrating his creative cooking while competing on the Food Network show America’s Best Cook. But before we get to his (more than) 15 minutes of fame, how the heck did a college graduate with a civil engineering degree, pursuing an MBA, end up competing in a competition to be ‘America’s Best Cook?'
Myles grew up in a family of foodies, with every family gathering centering around loads and loads of delicious eats. So when it was time to leave mom’s home-cooking and make his way to college, Myles realized he would need to start exploring in the kitchen if he wanted a taste of the comfort food he grew up on. This is where the love affair with food began.
After graduating college and landing a solid job in his field, Myles settled in for the 9-to-5 life but just couldn’t shake his passion for food. He started a food blog as a way to document his food experimentation at home, sharing delicious recipes he was whipping up when he was off the clock. And while daydreaming about a recipe for spicy sausage and tortellini soup at your desk while working on civil engineering projects seems a little dangerous (dangerously delicious, that is), these daydreams soon became a culinary reality.
At the urging of friends, Myles submitted an application to be featured on America’s Best Cook and, to his surprise, nailed a spot on the show alongside other competitors and celebrity chefs like Cat Cora and Alex Guarnaschelli.
So, where were we? Oh yeah: Myles was under the hot lights of network TV, feeling the pressure as he was asked to cook a protein he hadn’t worked with in his home cooking adventures. When it came time to get the judges involved, the score was less than he was hoping for but he got something better, inspiration. One judge applauded Myles approach on his sauce game and—EUREKA! Myles had finally found a way to marry his passion for food with his desire to own his own business. Phase one of 8 Myles was on its way.
It wasn’t long until Myles took his talents to the kitchen full-time, dropping his engineering career to devote all of his energy to making all-natural sauces to kick up any meal. While it was probably hard to imagine when he first got his start, in just a few short years 8 Myles is gracing the shelves of 20 local stores (like Dawson’s and Glen’s Garden Market) and even made its way on &pizza’s menu in 2017.
Recently, Myles has taken his culinary journey full circle: going back to his roots by cooking up new twists on the comfort food he grew up on. 8 Myles is now making INCREDIBLE Buffalo Mac N’ Cheese that you can find in a handful of stores, and has partnered with Union Kitchen to help get the new product line rolled out across the DMV. While buying the buffalo mac tomorrow will guarantee a ticket to flavortown, chef Myles has been busy in the lab whipping up two new flavors: but he needs your help!
Myles recently launched a Kiva page that will help him get the new flavors into your hands as soon as possible. Share his kiva campaign, because da mac is back!