Carpe Diem Baby...

When all is said and done, one must feel good about what they have accomplished, or they must keep pushing forward towards perfection, satisfaction and completion in all that they are and all that they do. Redemption of self worth is so important. One must feel like they have a purpose and a meaning, a sense of fulfillment in their journey. Along that path, we must go after what we desire, whether it be our career, our craft, our passions or our hearts. To seize the day, the circumstance, the moment...is what we should always aim for in life, for if we don't, we risk stumbling and fumbling our way through our existence without that sense of fulfillment...only to become a bleeding soul crying out for that redemption. I try hard to seize the day in all that I am and all that I do...thank all of you whoom I have worked with and worked for, for all your inspiration and for showing me this importance!
smoked rabbit roulade, slow roasted cepes, smoked pecans, saba,
apple salad, red ribbon sorrel, mustard dressing

spiced foie gras torchon, gingerbread streusel dust, beet paint, persimmons chutney
pomegranate gel, duck spice powder cassis reduction,
toasted brioche rubbed with hazelnut-cacao nib honey

grilled cobia belly, sautéed oca, roasted monkfish, bucatini pasta
roasted maitake mushrooms, white truffle-oxtail dashi

american wagyu beef loin sous vide, pumpkin, matsutake mushrooms
brussels sprout-walnut-onion hash, date puree, arugula
braised quince-cognac essence


Breakin The Law...

As a tribute to the Gods of Heavy Metal and my life-long passion for food, obsession for cooking and hard rock n roll, I offer you up this set of shots to tempt your taste buds…enter Judas Priest and the Taste of Bordeaux! How do the two go together one might ask? They don’t, they exist only in my head.

Enter Breakin the Law…breaking the laws of the normalcy, the mundane, or the routine, and certainly not traditional but with respect to tradition yet aimed at the modern, new and creative…

Livin After Midnight…enjoying all that is good and/or mischievous…in all that we do...in and out of the kitchen…for it is typically after midnight that I find myself delving into the realm of new ideas, long after most have faded into darkness and submitted to slumber.

Victims of Changes…victims of good taste, flavor, and style… for it was a select handful, subjected to an extraordinary meal and gathering of ingredients prepared with love, passion and desire… handcrafted with care, focused on the dedication towards excellence and total immersion of taste, and some great wines from the infamous region that is aforementioned.
silky pumpkin "cappuccino", chives, apples, pumpkin seed oil
gougeres with lobster, tarragon and avocado
smoked rabbit roulade, apricot mostarda, pistachios
raw shigoku oyster, hibiscus gelee, micro celery, licorice poached celery
bergamot, crème fraiche, lillet sorbet, crispy potato wafer
duck and chanterelle "pithivier", sunchoke puree, banyuls shallots, salsify
red ribbon sorrel, blackberry-laurel sauce
pan roasted monkfish, white truffled celery root puree
braised oxtails, glazed cepes, beet blush shoot, truffle essence
pepper crusted venison loin, savory hubbard squash cake, cassis mustard seeds
matsutake mushrooms, juniper carrots, persimmons compote
wild huckleberry "sauce rounenaise"
american wagyu beef loin, quince-foie gras "tart", whipped cranberry
crosnes, baby turnips, maitake mushrooms, quince-cognac sauce
taste of bordeaux...
chocolate-coffee cremeux cone, chocolate-espresso cannel, cherries, pears
hazelnut macaron, prune-armagnac ice cream, coffee, caramel and cherry jus

this is for all you head bangers out there!


Footsteps in my Mind...

I trace them constantly and ask what is my purpose? The answer lurks somewhere, this I'm sure. No matter the outcome, the search will continue...continue on for a better dish, a better way of doing things, a better representation of myself as a person and as a father and a better life. A few gathering of ingredients here presented and crafted in various ways. The busy season is definitely well upon us and not leaving much time to craft the new, yet just get through the shit ahead.

duck breast salad, sautéed matsutake mushrooms, pistachios,
 pine bud syrup, argan oil, micro arugula

silky celery root "cappuccino", white truffles, chestnut biscotti, spice-pistachio butter

spicy coconut panna cotta, hibiscus gelee, pickled pineapple, kaffir sorbet

warm rabbit salad, crispy duck tongues, pear puree, sweet cicely, maple
king trumpet-white truffle cappuccino, savory biscotti

seared foie gras, beets, persimmons, hazelnuts, beet blush, noble sherry reduction

pan roasted monkfish, red wine farro, caramelized brussels sprouts, walnuts
pumpkin, lobster mushrooms, amaranth, jus de poisson


Sympathy for the Devil...

Please allow me to introduce myself, I'm a man of wealth and taste!~ If gluttony and over-indulgence are one of the seven deadly sins, then this would surely be considered taking part! Gluttony in taste and over indulgence in the luxury of flavor. Divine, sinful and sensual as it were. These few dishes were part of a celebration of the season and the taking part of a triumphant juxtaposition of amazing ingredients. Cooking from the heart. This off the cuff ensemble was for a good friend who is all about food. One that I have had the great, great pleasure of cooking for many times. Enter Foie Gras and White Truffles...mmm, hard to go wrong. These are some of the things that do not come along every day, for if they did, it wouldn't be special. I wish everyone could taste and enjoy the dishes that were crafted that afternoon, yet for now, you will all have to enjoy them vicariously through this blog. For those that know where to obtain this humble cooking...I look forward to seeing you soon. For those that do not...if you meet me, have some courtesy, have some sympathy, and some taste~ enjoy!
foie gras torchon, pumpkin-pepper sponge, apples, apple jam, arugula
pistachios, huckleberry pearls, root beer pudding, spiced duck powder

braised rabbit pappardelle, white alba truffles, pumpkin, chanterelles
grana padano parmesan, mostarda, balsamic rabbit jus

slow braised veal cheeks, silky parsnip puree, matsutake mushrooms
thumbelina carrots, douglas fir sauce, pine bud essence
white truffle-celery root soup

alternate shot


Wanted Dead or Alive...

We as chefs are always searching for something new. Something to satisfy our passions... that burning desire to be creative, the need to fulfill our destiny of doing something worthy of our peers and public alike and an opportunity to build upon or maintain our reputation as noble craftsmen. We seek the blood of our profession that in turn fuels our fire and our hearts. Some lose sleep over it, some don't sleep at all. Some lose relationships over it and some gain new relationships in forms of addictions and even death. And all for what? A job and life that keeps us crazy busy at all hours of the day and doesn't even allow for much time away from work with loved ones and family? Hell. It is a way of life, a crazy one and if one is lucky...a damn good one. One just needs to be smart about it and balance things out, for all that is good, will surely come to an end if all we focus on is the work. Believe me, I know. It is a creative outreach and an internal soothing of the soul in which can bring out the best in us, or the worst. I wouldn't trade my career and craft for anything, for it is what I am, not what I do, and yet, so much I would do differently to be able to spend more time with my two sons. If I can teach my craft, my passion and my philosophy of life, love and career to those who are seeking this path, to help inspire them towards a better future, and perhaps enlighten towards a more positive alternative to life on the streets to the younger generation then I am certainly doing what I am supposed to do. Helping others and creating good times and memories for guests is why I do what I do. I only hope that I have made my two boys happy and proud, for it is for them that I pay tribute to once more. We as chefs continue to search endlessly for that sensation of perfection and satisfaction, in each dish and meal that we serve...we want it, we feel it, crave it, need it...dead or alive!
warm rabbit salad(alternative pairing with matsutake mushrooms)

seared foie gras, savory pumpkin sponge, hazelnuts, huckleberry pickled apples
huckleberry pearls, apple jam, black pepper-calvados-olive oil caramel

pumpkin-truffle agnolotti, white alba truffles, skate wing, pancetta
butternut, truffle-scallop nage

fennel crusted swordfish, lobster mushrooms, smoked cous cous
celery root, golden char roe, sherry-shallot confit

spice crusted duck breast~douglas fir grilled as it gets smoked

fir grilled duck, kale, baby turnips, cassis mustard seeds, black currant sauce

duck accompaniments~chanterelles, black truffles, duck tongues

Food Porn 11.10.14...

Don't know if I would even call it that, and yet I just did. Borderline uber creative. Basically, a simple night at the stove. Some of the food lately has been cool and imaginative yet needing a new breakthrough. The taste of fall that we have began to experience is definitely getting new ground. Refreshing and fun, sensual and heartwarming. Comforting and soothing...my favorite time to cook. Here lies the truth of the moment. All of it...the good, the bad and the ugly.
warm rabbit salad, pedro ximenez gel, pistachios, arugula, king trumpet mushrooms
pears, root beer pudding, sherry xo reduction

pearl jasmine gelee, licorice poached celery, pickled orange
nectarplum ice

slow braised veal cheeks, chanterelles, parsnip puree, cassis mustard
coffee roasted carrots, port essence

lamb loin sous vide, baked celery root, caramelized cauliflower & garlic
juniper & fir roasted lobster mushrooms, pine bud sauce


Binge and Purge...

Sometimes it is all about just cooking and getting the led out. Fueling your fire to create and to please. Just cooking from your heart for your friends and family, the masses and the special diners alike. It doesn't always mean it is your best work. Hell, I rarely think mine is my best. It will probably never be that for me. Every now and again, I will cook a dish and say wow, that fuckin' rocks...and then right after it will be like...this sucks. In the heat of the moment, I take photos of the work and think one way or another about it, then later when reviewing the shots, it can be a let down, in that sure they were tasty, the dishes were solid, and the guests seemed to enjoy it thoroughly, but sensually, spiritually, emotionally for me, it fell short, or at least that is the way it gets labeled in my head. Don't get me wrong, I do enjoy much of my work and feel good about it. At times though, we are just cooking...doing what we know how to, doing what we do best. We are chefs and we are perfectionists. If we rested on our asses and thought we are so great and we do the best food or best service, then we have already lost. We have succumbed to accepting that we can not go further and thus we don't try for we are already great. A great leader will always keep thriving to forge ahead and get better. I hope I never rest, but push on reaching for greatness and perfection, knowing all too well I will never reach it in this lifetime. Here are some of those dishes...some good, some bad, some cool...but never perfect!
warm scallop salad, porcini mushrooms, duck tongues, arugula, pears
pecans, maple-bourbon vinaigrette

pan roasted foie gras, caramelized banana, spice powder, coconut emulsion
smoked vanilla-black pepper caramel

fennel pollen crusted sole, zucchini "carbonara", lobster mushrooms
baby tomatoes, chick peas, savory shrimp broth, herb oil

spice roasted duck breast, apples, walnuts, walnut powder
smoked cous cous, glazed carrots

syrah braised veal cheeks, silky parsnips, truffled baby turnips, cipolline onions
chanterelles, cassis essence

Farewell To Kings...

Or should I say...whole lotta' leavin' goin' on? Either way you translate things today, it rings true. We have seen a few go on to bigger, brighter pastures of late from our own kitchen...movin' onward and upward, or even backward as it were in some cases to take on new roles in search of new ideas with new peeps. Some have moved on to live new lives in new locales with new experiences. Some lately around town(reads Jason Franey of Canlis), are moving on to new gigs to create cool food in search of a dream...and some here and there have simply cashed in their chips to explore their new nirvana with the almighty above. Here are a few dishes that I offer up to them as a tribute to their time spent with us in the kitchen, the city, as friends and on this planet.
seared foie gras, apple jam, caramelized apples, bruleed bananas
curry dust, calvados-black pepper caramel

warm porcini salad, crisp potato gaufrette, duck tongues, potatoes
truffles, arugula, sherry dressing

pan roasted weakfish(spotted trout)
sweet corn, roasted lobster mushrooms, leeks, bacon
maple-bourbon vinegar sauce

braised veal cheek and venison loin
baby turnips, kale, roasted cauliflower, king trumpet mushrooms

duck breast sous vide, chanterelles, red wine cipolline onions
coffee roasted thumbelina carrots, parsnip puree, smoked cous cous, barolo jelly