INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — He’s well-known across the area for his cooking.
He’s got decades of experience in the kitchen and his passion for food is pure.
Chef Neal Brown, 50, is a partner and chef of One Trick Pony, with locations in Broad Ripple and Fishers.
Brown told News 8 that in his years of cooking, he has learned you have to be resilient. He says he doesn’t consider cooking an art form, but rather a craft. He says everything you do as a chef is open to interpretation.
Brown has been cooking in Indianapolis for over 25 years. For him, it began in high school where he grew up in Noblesville.
He went to Indiana University, then graduated Johnson & Whales University in 1996, and moved back to Indy.
“I started as a dishwasher, and kind of started to work my way up through restaurants, line cook, really trying to do everything in a restaurant that I could.”
He also went to culinary school. That persistence paid off. He created several brands including Pizzology, Libertine Liquor Bar, Ukiyo, and One Trick Pony. He opened One Trick Pony in November at the Fishers Test Kitchen, where he and his business partner, Greg, are consultants for the city on the test kitchen.
“We do diner-style smashed burgers. They’re like the old-school, crispy-edged, burgers, if you remember just really thin, lots of cheese, kind of messy to eat.”
News 8 went into the kitchen at the Broad Ripple Location, and Neal showed us how it’s done. “Pressing the beef as hard as you can against the hot surface. Getting as much surface coverage as possible on the burger. You get this amazing deep-beef flavor.”
Brown says he just wants to make people happy through his food. “The way that I sort of hope people take away from One Trick Pony is that simple things are still the most delicious. That will always be true. A good cheeseburger can be just as satisfying as a 17-course tasting menu at a Michelin star restaurant.”
This is the third story in a series we’re calling “INside Story.” The rest of David‘s stories looking at Indy’s top chefs — as recommended by Visit Indiana and Visit Indy — will air each evening this week on News 8.