Nine on The Line

William Kovacs

William Kovacs is co-owner of Prep & Pastry as well as the guy behind the marketing for the popular cafe. William (aka "Billy") has also signed on to be the creative director of tech-marketing firm Injected Media and an ambassador for the UA's Tech Launch Arizona, a program that uses shared knowledge bases, networks, and backgrounds to support the pipeline of ideas out of the UA, keeping ideas and talent in Southern Arizona. But most importantly he is the man to see for a dossant! Check out Prep & Pastry at

What was the first dish you had that changed your perspective on food?

Steak Tartare. Classic and simple to eat, but not so simple to make.

What are you eating these days?

Miss Saigon downtown (order the 42B), Taco Shop on Broadway (grilled chicken burrito, add sour cream), the happy hour Burrata pizza at Tavolino, and I'm packing at least two PB&J's a day. 

What was the first dish you remember cooking?

I found this strawberry balsamic pizza recipe online that sounded amazing. Two hours and $56 dollars later the pizza was finally done. We were so hungry we didn't mind that the center wasn't fully done ... I'm pretty sure we ate one piece and went to bed. 

What concept, ingredient or food trend does everyone seem to love, but you just can't stomach?

Groupon & Livingsocial. It's great for guests, but not sustainable for restaurants. We live and die by our ever-changing margins. Not to say I'm opposed to giving a discount to guests. I just don't like using those vehicles.

What chef, with us or passed on, would you most like to cook or eat dinner with?

Anthony Bourdain. I love that he experiences food how it should be ... he shows us that food should be unpretentious, creative, authentic, and a great way to communicate across cultural and language barriers. I would love to just sit with him at Les Halles and let him pick great food for us to eat.

What city, other than Tucson, is your favorite place to eat?

Chicago. From Birchwood Kitchen, Spiaggia for a family dinner, and a great date at BOKA. It has something for everyone. I love to walk and enjoy what the city has to offer. 

Speaking in junk food terms, what is your favorite guilty pleasure?

Breakfast burritos. 4 a.m. or 4 p.m., it doesn't matter. I can't stop eating them.

Top three Tucson restaurants?

Tavolino, Rocco's Little Chicago, The Sausage Shop (not Sausage Deli).

With a figurative electric chair in your immediate future, what is your last meal?

One rib-eye, one tenderloin, one strip steak, one T-bone, lightly sautéed spinach, corn on the cob, and drinking a bottle of Ehlers Estate Cabernet Franc, while watching The Thomas Crown Affair. Steak temps? Rare.