Occupation: Owner of the Oilerie (1045 Grand Ave., St. Paul; 651-356-2968; oilerie.com)
What did you want to be when you grew up? An architect. I flunked out of architecture school and went into sales and became a lawyer. I'm now a recovering lawyer.
What was your first job in food? Opening the Oilerie.
What exactly is the Oilerie? A store with 20 types of extra-virgin olive oils and 10 types of balsamic vinegars shipped to us directly from Italy. Customers can taste them and make a selection. Then it's bottled for them so they get exactly what they tasted.
What's the big advantage of buying olive oil at a store like yours? We know exactly where our product comes from - 60 miles south of Rome. So customers know the authenticity and get to taste it before they buy it. Our knowledgeable staff can tell them how to use it in their daily lives.
How many olive oils should one person own at a time? I keep eight or nine bottles of olive oils and balsamic vinegars on my counter at all times.
What's something few people know about you? I do a lot of volunteer work. During the past four or five years, I've been spearheading an effort by our Rotary district to identify a new model for sustainable economic development in third-world countries.
What culinary trend do you wish would die? Fast food.
Is there something in your career that you wish you had done differently? I don't think so.
What's your favorite restaurant? The St. Paul Grill. I like steak.
If someone were to play you in a movie, who should it be? I don't have a clue.
What's the weirdest food you've ever eaten? Probably white anchovies. I didn't think I would like them, but I did.
What's next? Hopefully, this Oilerie will be successful and we can add more stores.