Ever wondered where your favorite chef likes to dine? Or what he craves to eat? Or what he thinks every Texan should have in his pantry at all times? We came up with a list of curious questions—quirky and practical—and e-mailed them to some of the state’s top chefs. And they spilled the beans. Read on to find out what Josh Watkins had to say.

If you could only spend $10 on a meal, where would you go? Okay, $200?
The Odd Duck and Justine’s.

What are you craving right now?
Coffee granite and doughnut holes.

Don’t trust a skinny chef: fact or not?
Definitely not!

Fill in the blank: Paula Deen is _____.

What should every Texan keep in his pantry at all times?
Pecan wood chips.

Who would you love to cook for?
Dana Cowin.

What is your favorite outside-of-Texas food destination?
San Francisco, North Beach area.

When did you know you wanted to become a chef?
When I was fifteen, cooking at the Pier on Lake Austin.

What qualities do you most value in your cooks?
Passion, sense of urgency, pursuit of perfection.

What food do you splurge on?

What makes a dish perfect?
Balance of flavor and texture.

Which chef do you most admire?
Joël Robuchon.

If you were a guest judge on Top Chef, what would your challenge be?
Citrus challenge. Use a variety of citrus in unique ways.

What’s one food you will never like or understand why people like it?
Beef kidney.

What food do Texans crave more than anything else?