Few holidays are as joyful as Thanksgiving. No gifts to buy or special events to attend, it’s just a long weekend with family and friends celebrating each other. After the long months of COVID-19, reuniting around the table is the ultimate way to give thanks, and Expert Chef Vic Vegas, of TV’s Bar Rescue, is working to bring Briotech cleaning and disinfecting products to restaurants, kitchens, and food suppliers so everyone can enjoy a safe holiday meal.
On Bar Rescue, Chef Vic does more than simply cook. For the past eight years, host Jon Taffer relied on him to help him turn around failing establishments. “He calls me in for the food and kitchen side of things—menu rebuild, creation, sanitary, and safety—to literally put all the food, health, safety, and training procedures into play.”
Having started from the ground up, as a restaurant dishwasher, Chef Vic had a simple goal: “to observe and absorb as much as possible.” He aimed to, “choose and work with the right companies head on to gain experience in restaurants that many will visit in this lifetime.” His strategy paid off, “I have worked at several amazing establishments and this journey has allowed me to become the chef you know today.”
Chef Vic first crossed paths with Briotech thanks to their mutual friend, Yolanda Christensen of Free to Fly. Having worked in a variety of food service positions, he’s heard all the misconceptions and old wives’ tales about how to keep things clean. “There isn’t a price on safety,” he stresses. “Yes, we have to watch our dollars, but safety is always first.” He now partners with Briotech to put their highly-effective Hypochlorous Acid (HOCl) products to work every day.
HOCl is a natural antimicrobial made from only salt and water. Known for use as an antiseptic and disinfectant, HOCl is recognized for its non-hazardous, safe for human and animal profile, and has been used in hospitals, schools, foodservice and other industries for many years.
“Though Briotech products are currently distributed into a variety of markets, our partnership with Chef Vic represents our first initiative focus within the foodservice industry,” explains Briotech’s President and CEO, Rick Lockett. “We believe it is critical to bring more effective solutions—that do not bear the negative impact of alternative harsh chemicals—to restaurants, bars, and foodservice workers who play such a key roles.”
“As our world reopens and restaurants begin operating at full capacity, it’s important that patrons feel safe while dining by knowing their surroundings have been tended to for infectious pathogens of all sorts,” Lockett continues. “Our Brio-Technically Certified program will be the visible sign of our commitment to a sanitary space.”
Lockett and his team will roll out their Brio-Technically Certified program at Chef Vic’s Las Vegas-based restaurants and expand from there. They’re also partnering on educational videos in support of their initiative. “We are very excited to work with Chef Vic on this project,” says Lockett. “His passion for the industry is real and evident and he truly wants to help other entrepreneurs, chefs, and staff around the country to create better environments for work and entertainment. As Chef Vic says: ‘Safety first!’, and around food, nobody wants to use harsh chemicals that aren’t food contact safe. Keep the kitchen, staff, and patrons safe, and let them all focus on what they’re there for—amazing food!”
Several of Briotech’s products are an ideal fit for the kitchen and dining room. Briotech Sanitizer + Disinfectant is on the EPA List N: Disinfectants for COVID-19 and is a no rinse, food contact safe product that kills 99.99% of viruses and bacteria. BrioPro Cleaner + Degreaser is their heavy duty, bio-based electrolyzed cleaner and degreaser. It powers through heavy grease and grime, oil, adhesives, and tough soils that accumulate on stovetops, appliances and countertops in industrial settings and in commercial kitchens.
The company’s Surface + Air Cleanser is a multi-purpose concentrate formula for broad-based cleaning and odor removal on surfaces and in the air, and their newest product, just released for pre-sale, is BrioCare Abrasia Gel, a hypochlorous skin cleanser for superficial abrasions and minor scrapes and scratches that inevitably happen on a daily basis. You can shop for Briotech cleaners on their website, on Amazon, or at Home Depot, and enjoy their presence on Facebook by staying up-to-date on company announcements, sales and specials, science tidbits, and new product launches.
Outside of work, Chef Vic Vegas spends time bringing awareness to the ministry of St. Jude’s Ranch for Children. A member of their Community Advisory Board, he assists in fundraising and helps further their mission of, “Transforming the lives of abused and at-risk children, young adults and families by empowering them to create new chances, new choices and new hope in a caring community.”
This year he’s excited for the Thanksgiving holiday. “We all know cooking for me is number one,” admits Chef Vic. “It turns out I do most of my cooking for others before the actual holiday, but this year is special because I get to cook for the kids up at Saint Jude’s on Thanksgiving day; something I couldn’t do last year because of COVID restrictions.”
“It’s been a long and strong journey for me, and sometimes I feel we have to climb mountains not only for ourselves, but so we can see what’s up there for others, to let them know,” says Chef Vic. “That’s what I think we’re doing here. We’ve been brought together to take what I do in this industry and infuse it into the amazing safer world that Briotech is creating. I see a future of us working together to bring awareness, convenience, and confidence through cleanliness and safety in all establishments.”