Tuesday, December 29, 2009

New Years Eve Menu

Our New Years Eve Menu this year is being called the "chefs whim".. 5 courses of whatever we want to do for you.  Most nights we roll with the punches and develop some dishes on the spot for our tasting menu. we have  fun with the ingredients we have in house and bring in a new item or two to throw on our tasting menus.
But a holiday in a restaurant is not one to screw with...no way we can just develop something on the fly for 150 seperate tasting menus...so I started developing some of this years dishes tonight. A hefty order from one of my favorite purveuyors brought in red leg partridge, hudson valley foie gras, heavy bag of fresh winter truffles, venison tenderloin, veal sweetbreads & painted hills beef to name a few.

Some of the dishes to expect this NYE

Cured Venison Carpaccio/walnut & horseradish cream

Veal Sweetbread "Lyonnaise"/1 hour egg/banyuls vinagrette

Red Leg Partridge/puy lentils/truffled cabbage

Gingerbread Stout Cake/egg nog froth/organic local cranberries

Thursday, December 24, 2009

A Story (love story)

I think every chef and foodie has a story...a love story about one meal or dish that changed the way they think and approach food. For me it was a simple dish on the River running through Logrono in Spains wine capital of Rioja.Grilled Pork Belly over open fire of olive wood, sea salt & lime. Served with fresh baked baquette and a bottle of Rioja served in a traditional drinking vessel called a poron. It took me into a world in which a meal can tell stories of what is in season, where people are from, and if you read between the lines, where they are going.
As I beging to think about where I'm going professionally, I want to make sure that every dish that comes out of the kitchen tells the story I want it to tell. I want the diner to enjoy every bite as if it was their last, and with each bite dive deeper into a story about where the food came from, how was it prepared and why they think I decided to put certain components together.
I want to take my cuisine up a notch (or two or three), take what Ive learned this past year about sustainability & the local farming in my region and combine it with the ability to provide a dining experience that my guests will not forget. Building who I am as a chef is something that will constantly evolve and change as the time goes by, one of the best reasons for being a chef if you ask me. Its never mundane or repetitive, as long as you strive to challenge yourself and allow your cuisine to evolve into what you are..not what you think people want it to be. Stay true to who you are and where your from and let that story be told through your food. Merry Christmas

Sunday, December 20, 2009

2009 in pictures

As look back on 2009, I can honestly say that its probably been the of the best years in my career so far. One of my all time goals was achieved much earlier than I had ever anticipated...cooking at the James Beard House, I was humbled by winning a Rising Star Chef Award from starchefs.com. I have cooked alongside some amazing chefs starting with my own team at Tastings (Matt & Imani) and then outside the restaurant at some of the regions most well known culinary events including the Nantucket Food & Wine Festival where I was one of the 2009 culinary luminaries, I was invited to cook at the Governors Holiday Ball as well as some amazing wine dinners with some of the countries most influential people in wine today including Jorge Ordonez and the Duckhorn Wine Collection.

On a personal note, its been tough without my DAD around but my wife and family have been there for me. My wife and I purchased our first home together, have had a wonderful time watching our two children become their own persons, and my oldest has become a pre-teen....not sure what to expect in 2010 but I can tell you that if its anything like 2009....I'm in for a great year.
A lot of pictures but hope you have time to watch the slide show

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Berkshire Pork Shank is Back!!!

Vermouth Braised Berkshire Pork Shank
Peruvian Lima Beans, house cured pancetta, orange gremolata, almond milk froth

One of my favorite dishes we had on the menu last winter is back for a second tour of duty this seasson. For some reason we didnt include the pancetta, but after a week of saying "WTF is missing....pancetta!!!" the original dish returns....Matt stated to cure the pork bellies yesterday for pancetta and soon we will again have the best winter dish on our menu!!

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Governors Holiday Ball

I have been asked to cook at the Governors Holiday Ball this year.

What an honor to be selected to showcase the cuisine at Tastings among some of the biggest names in Bostons culinary scene of today....many of which I grew up with wanting to follow in their footsteps.

The event is called "A Culinary Affair" a VIP walk around tasting for the Governor and 300 of his special guests. I have decided to make my dish a celebration of what the Commonwealth of Massachusetts has to offer the culinary world.

Chilled Westport Rivers Poached Island Creek Oysters
 red beet mignonette ,caviar

Westport Rivers Winery is located in Southeastern MA, right on the ocean in Westport MA. The produce one of the finest sparkling wines made in the USA today.

I have written about Island Creek Oysters in the past, and many of you know that these oysters have graced the table of the finest restaurants in the world including Thomas Kellers restaurants The French Laundry, Bouchon & Per Se.

The Caviar is being purchased from The Little Pearl one of the countries leading distributors of fine American sustainable caviar, free of pollution and preservatives. Voted as the Best Domestic caviar by the Chefs in America Organization. The connection to MA, their home base......Boston MA.

I will bring a camera to this event for sure...not just for the food but more importantly to get a great picture of Matt in a tuxedo!

Thursday, December 3, 2009

White Carrot "Creme Brulee" /Saffron & Blood Orange Foam/Petite Basil Salad

Saturday marks our second year participating in the Rodman Ride For Kids Celebration For Kids, a fundraiser at the World Trade Center in Boston to raise much needed money for The Rodman Ride for Kids, an umbrella matching gift charity raising funds for youth-focused social service agencies in Massachusetts.

Tickets are still available by clicking here....hope to see you there.

Our dish this year, Savory White Carrot "Creme Brulee"/Saffron & Blood Orange Foam/Petite Basil Salad..I think we bit off a little more than we can chew....700 portions, prep begins tomorrow morning!!!
Honestly....all worth it.