Joseph “JJ” Johnson is a chef and now author of “Food Is What I Do”. Growing up in Tobyhanna PA, with a family of mixed cultures, he was awarded the unique opportunity to eat a variety of different things from a very early age. With growing taste buds, curiosity, and a Puerto Rican grandmother, Joseph knew as a child that food needed to and was going to be a dominant part of his life. After graduating from The Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, NY where his formal training took place, Joseph started honing his skills at some of the busiest and most well known dining establishments in Pennsylvania and New York City, including Tribeca Grill (along side Chef Stephen Lewandowski) JANE, Sky Top Lodge and Tropica.
Chef JJ displayed his love for all things food and spread his culinary skills to a even wider audience when he became the first winner on season one of BRAVO television's competitive cooking show, “Rocco's Dinner Party”. Winning the show put Chef JJ on a new and exciting ride to be able to display his talents. JJ makes guest appearances at various Food and Wine Festivals all over the north east, including Rhode Island, Pennsylvania and Connecticut. He has also cooked for individuals such as New York’s own Governor Patterson, Sue Phillips, and Hillary Clinton.
In an effort to get individuals to be more conscious of what they put in their bodies and to increase awareness of childhood obesity, Chef JJ works closely with Wholesome Wave and Chefs Move to School Programs, With this in mind, JJ is working on a television show called, “Kids Love Cooking With Chef JJ”. On the show, kids are taught healthier cooking techniques and how to make better food choices.
There is such passion and creativity in Chef JJ. He believes that food is an expression and cooking is the greatest stimulator in life. He incorporates local ingredients with modern cooking techniques, and believes in lacing his food with a sense of humor and most of all love.