Sunday, January 9, 2011

From Worth Street to NoHo: Dinner for 20 People

December 16th marked an amazing night for Worth Kitchen. It was the first time that we were asked to take the concept outside of our 4 walls and into a brand new space. We had the complete and utter privilege of cooking in the amazing penthouse of Red Car, a well known and very professional post production house dedicated primarily to the advertising industry. It was a very natural fit for us and our guests were mostly all advertising professionals.

We are used to cooking and plating for 8 to 9 people on a weekly basis. Tamy is a huge help when we have these dinners, but the work usually is not so overwhelming. This time around, no amount of prepping could really prepare us for how crazy it is to plate 20 dishes all at the same time and have them served hot. Tamy was not only a huge help, she was indispensable. I am lucky to have found not only a life partner so great as her but such a strong support in the moments when I most need her.

What we both most loved about this dinner is the fact that the Worth Kitchen concept still survives outside of our intimate setting. 20 perfect strangers came together and for one night were great friends. I like to think that great food and wine can spark any type of conversation, and this case was not any different.

Our learnings: 1) Prep, prep, prep! I had everything cut and in containers the night before. The moment I arrived to cook, 70% of the work was already done. This made a huge difference in the final product. 2) At events of 20+ we will need more help, especially for the plating. Feb 3rd, we will need at least 2 additional hands in the kitchen! 3) Always have fun. I think this goes for everything we do and what everybody does. If you can do it with a smile on your face you already won!

The menu:
Amuse Bouche 
Butternut squash & rosemary with honey toasted pinenuts

Fennel salad w/ shallot & champagne vinaigrette, parmesan chips and valencia orange slices

Braised short ribs with barolo reduction, ricotta polenta & balsamic marinated portobello mushrooms

Warm chocolate cake with a vanilla cream injection

Some quick pics...

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