Degustation Series 01.25.07...

We have started off the new year with many tastings of various nature. Some lengthy, some short and sweet. In a nutshell, it's all good. We have had this new fixation by our guests to do just fish, only meat, only foie etc. It has been a great inspiration for myself and our team, after a busy holiday season and one that does not always warrant the finer points of dining, which for some, consists of a more safer fare. That is all fine and good, but it does not push our intellect and minds to further our own nourishment. That's the biz. We are also finding ourselves in a much better space as we have rid ourselves of a nuisance, and a big bitchy, rude pain in the ass. I will leave it at that...(think inside joke). The chemical makeup of our team has changed significantly, and with that comes challenge. Sometimes painful, it is for the better good. It is always great to those that are truly passionate about their work, their craft and their forward learning, moving together in motion towards something that will enhance the moment. It is an inspiration to myself to create an environment and an opportunity that will help them through their career and teach them what they will essentially need to reach that elevated level of the sought desire to seek perfectionism! As I have seen many times over and again in my kitchen, what starts out as an appearingly struggle and lack of talent,... Persistence and passion with a lot of coaching and teaching will usually prevail. You see that glisten in one's eye. Yearning for more. Looking for someone to take him or her under their wing and guide. To some, I am a father, a priest(yea, right!), a mentor, a coach, and yes, an asshole. I can usually always detect the ones who I can see will grow to become great. Our historic track record is a testament to that. The goal is to keep cooking! Enough of this....here is the menu of the moment....enjoy!
"Candied Squab" Napoleon with Melted Grapes
Winter Squash Sponge, Red Wine-Fig Syrup and a dollop of Pommes Mousseline
Seared Hawaiian Ahi Tuna
Maine Lobster, Yuzu, American Sturgeon Caviar, Savory Avocado Ice Cream
Smoked Blackberry Honey Lacquered Foie Gras
Chestnut Puree, Quince Confit, Salted Shallot Streusel and Pedro Ximenez Vinegar
Pan Roasted Wild Striped Bass
Truffled Potato Cylinders, Crosnes, Cipolline Onion Marmalade and Hedgehog Mushrooms
Lemon Soda and Pomegranate "Caviar"
Ras el Hanout Dusted Lamb Tenderloin
Anson Mills White Grits, Grilled Asparagus Composure, Sweetbreads and Parsnip Milk Foam
Warm Brandied Apples, Pistachio Gelato
Caramel-Coffee Brulee, Valrhona Chocolate Bite
Pomegranate Pates de Fruits, Almond Macaroons, Milk Chocolate Domes


Anonymous angelchef said...

I read that both you and your employees consider yourself a father, priest, mentor, coach, and asshole. And that you recently let go someone. Is it hard to give someone the boot? How about if you like the person and they haven't done any wrong? In your roll as father or mentor isn't it hard? I've never had to fire or lay -off anyone before. I'm in a situtation where I'm going to have to.Can you give me some advice? How do you do it and still manage to keep your emotions out of it? Thank you for listening

2:11:00 AM  
Blogger cuisinier said...

Well...first of all, it is hard to let someone go. It is always difficult to keep emotion out of the equasion. It is not often that I find myself in the position that I do not like someone on our team, otherwise, we would not have hired them in the first place. As a manager and an operator, you have a distinct and definite responsibility to maintain quality and effeciency in the operation, not only to yourself and business partners but to your staff as well and that is what must compell you to act responsibly. It is never easy, but I have found that althoiugh difficlut at times, honesty is always best. By being honest to someone, it only helps them to obtain perfection in their work and get on the right path, even if that means somewhere else. At times, no matter how much you might like someone or enjoy working with them, it is really for the best that you part ways to keep that friendship or at least professional relationship in tact. In the long run, someone who is honest with themself will recognize and appreciate that. Good luck!

11:38:00 AM  
Anonymous angelchef said...


1:29:00 PM  

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