shop anniversary party THIS FRIDAY!

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Hello sweet teeth,

Well first of all. People keep asking us if we’re going to have the Savory Dinner Series this year. I’m so pleased that so many people liked the weird little meals I dreamed up. Unfortunately, much to my sadness, we bought some new equipment this year that takes up most of the space we need for the dinners, so we’re skipping the series this year, though we might try to squeeze in one dinner or so later in the summer.

Speaking of indulgences: this Friday, June 27, is our 3-year shop anniversary celebration, and I so hope you’ll come. 8 PM, at the shop, dress up if you’d like. There will be lots of nice drinks, chocolates, cake made by Maresa, and maybe even a savory nibble or two. It’s our annual thank-you to our amazing customers and nurturing community—that means you!

See you Friday!

 

August 2013 Savory Dinner: Mad Men Summer

Updated versions of kitschy ’50s and ’60s dishes? Made with local farm-fresh veggies and lots and lots of delicious sweets? HAPPY SUMMER!

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Tickets are available here. 

August 2013: Mad Men Summer

  • Peach punch with thyme
  • Barbecue potato chips with caramelized onion and shallot dip
  • Heirloom iceberg lettuce salad with cashew blue cheese dressing
  • Cream of tomato soup with fried curly parsley
  • Macaroni and cheese casserole with croissant crumbs and potato cracklings
  • Gin and Tonic gelee shots
  • Deep dish peach pie
  • Chocolate-covered neapolitan ice cream bombe
  • Mignardise: Chocolate caramel nougat bars with chocolate Bavarian cream

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Couple things:

  • Dinners are $70 per person, plus tax and gratuity.
  • Reservations can also be purchased in person at the shop.
  • Reservations are non-refundable, however if we can find someone to replace your reservation we will fully refund your purchase. We often have a waiting list for dinners so please let us know if you can’t make it!
  • Dinners begin sharply at 7:30pm and will last approximately 2 hours. Doors to the dining room open at 7:20pm.
  • Dinners are BYOB.
  • Dinners contain all kinds of things like nuts, wheat, gluten, soy, & sugar—but never any dead animals or animal products. ‘Course not!
  • Unfortunately we can’t accommodate substitutions for the menu, although if there is a complimentary alcohol beverage we can make you a virgin one—just tell us when you place your reservation.
  • If you have a birthday in your party, let us know when you place your reservation.
  • There is limited free parking available onsite in the front and rear of the building. First come first serve parking after 7:00pm please.

Please click here for more information and photos and menus of previous dinners.

May 2013 Savory Dinner: Imagined Shanghai

First, the menu (click on any image to make it bigger):

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The Lychee and Pink Grapefruit Slushy was so great that we decided to start serving it (sans vodka) in the shop during the summertime. 263234_10151580504274235_1547209021_n

Soup Dumplings, xiao long bao. Soup inside a dumpling! I worked for weeks on these darlings. The finished dumplings:

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The centers:

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Ah, the table. 
268937_10151580503659235_1044159244_n Strange Flavor eggplant with ginger foam and wild watercress
Stinky tofu (tofu fermented in homemade white miso for two weeks)
Dry fried green beans with smoked ramps 970066_10151580503979235_532459531_n

My favorite part of the dinner was the Shanghai-style Hot and Sour Soup. Mostly because I like making soups, and also because this was one of the tastiest soups I’ve ever made. And because we had fun with the anise smoke for it. We set star anise pods on fire and injected the smoke from them under the lids of the soup bowls, so diners got a burst of anise-y scent when they took off the lids. You can see a little slideshow of the effect here if you scroll through the photos quickly.

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Hand pulled street cart noodles
With XO sauce, Maine dulse, Taliaferro Farms arugula, Four Winds Farm wild watercress
and sous vide Four Winds Farm carrot transparency.

960184_10151580504324235_1645705841_nI discovered while coming up with this dish that deep-fried seaweed is the best nibble of all time. Try it! Soak seaweed in warm water, strain it (reserve the water for soup stocks!), pat it dry, and deep fry. I used dulse wildcrafted off the coast of Maine, but arame and hijiki are also nice.

Jacob was master of the Carrot Transparency, which I made from sous-vide carrots pureed with a little sesame oil and sea salt, then dehydrated until they made a carrot leather. Everyone really loved them, which is good because I was worried they would be weird. 969579_10151580503784235_579615392_n

We filled bowls with flowers from my yard and put them on the table as centerpieces, then told everyone to take a bowl at the end of the meal. Lucy and Jacob put the Congee into the center of each bowl, then poured hot water over the flowers, and each diner ate the rice as they inhaled the flower tea.

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Green tea congee with peanut soil, red bean paste, and candied asparagus.

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Coconut-corn ice cream with coriander caramel.

It was a lot of “C”s for Lucy to say every night. But she did it perfectly, as always.

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Corn ice cream in the ice cream maker!

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Mignardise: sesame nori crisps and sea salt shiitake truffles.

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Ah, it was a good night.

Thanks to all who came!

July 2013 Savory Dinner: Summer in Paris

This is going to be a nice one. July 23, 24, and 25. Tickets are now on sale! 

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July 2013: Summer in Paris

  • Vodka gimlet with basil-meyer lemon syrup
  • Socca (chickpea flour crepes) with braised Belgian endive
  • Soupe au pistou with creme de pissenlits (dandelion cream)
  • Compressed market vegetables with nasturtium leaves, candied peas, and baby leek vinaigrette
  • Molecular nicoise salad with olive oil spheres
  • Potato gratin with swiss chard
  • Shiitake stroganoff with straw potatoes
  • Crêpe cake with fresh ground cherry currant jam and candied wild violets
  • Chocolate chervil tart with tempura strawberries and mint
  • Mignardises

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The fine print:

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  • Unfortunately we can’t accommodate substitutions for the menu.
  • Want to bring your own alcohol? Bring it! (Glasses of whatever you’re drinking sent to the kitchen wouldn’t be turned down…)
  • Dinners contain all kinds of things like nuts, wheat, gluten, soy, & sugar—but never any dead animals or animal products. ‘Course not!
  • If you have a birthday in your party, let us know when you place your reservation.
  • Mignardises are a secret treat we give you at the very end of the meal to take with you…or eat as you linger with your new besties all night long!
  • Dinners are $65 per person, plus tax and gratuity.

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June 2013 Savory Dinner: Foraged Feast

Dinner #2 of the 2013 season! Tickets are currently on sale. SOLD OUT! THANKS SO MUCH!!

June 21, 22, and 23:

June 2013: Foraged Feast

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As many found foods as we can stuff into one giant meal. Depending on what’s in the fields, forest, backyard, and garden, here’s a loose idea of the menu:

  • May wine
  • Almond deviled eggless eggs with backyard chives and sautéed daylillies
  • Schav (Yiddish sorrel soup) with garlic chives, white chicken mushrooms and fried pickle lace
  • Creamed spring spinach, garlic mustard, and dandelion with burdock
  • Beet salad with woodruff, cashew cheese, radish, yuzu, and pine oil dressing
  • Spring mushrooms (ideally morels and chanterelles, we’ll see what’s out there in the world!) with pickled ramp béarnaise
  • Lilac sorbet with strawberry flowers and fraises du bois
  • White chocolate mousse with chamomile sauce and wild walnut cream
  • Mignardise: Spruce sablee cookies

The fine print:

  • Unfortunately we can’t accommodate substitutions for the menu.
  • Want to bring your own alcohol? Bring it! (Glasses of whatever you’re drinking sent to the kitchen wouldn’t be turned down…)
  • Dinners contain all kinds of things like nuts, wheat, gluten, soy, & sugar—but never any dead animals or animal products. ‘Course not!
  • If you have a birthday in your party, let us know when you place your reservation.
  • Mignardises are a secret treat we give you at the very end of the meal to take with you…or eat as you linger with your new besties all night long!
  • Dinners are $60 per person, plus tax.

May Savory Dinner: Imagined Shanghai

SOLD OUT! THANKS!!!

It’s happening! Our first savory dinner of the season. Mark your calendars and buy your tickets now. May 7, 8, and 9 we are excited to present to you:

May 2013: Imagined Shanghai

A fantasia of urban Chinese excitements. Please note that menus can and most likely will change based on whim, whimsy, and market availability.

  • Lychee and pink grapefruit slushy
  • Xiao long bao: soup dumplings: pockets of tender dough with a soupy surprise
  • Braised eggplant with stinky tofu
  • Hushi Suanla Geng: Hot and Sour Soup with woodear mushrooms and daylily buds
  • Dry fried green beans
  • Hand pulled street cart noodles with XO sauce and fried arame
  • Ma-po tofu
  • Dessert congee
  • Corn ice cream with burnt sugar caramel
  • Mignardises

The fine print:

  • Unfortunately we can’t accommodate substitutions for the menu.
  • Want to bring your own alcohol? Bring it! (Glasses of whatever you’re drinking sent to the kitchen wouldn’t be turned down…)
  • Dinners contain all kinds of things like nuts, wheat, gluten, soy, & sugar—but never any dead animals or animal products. ‘Course not!
  • If you have a birthday in your party, let us know when you place your reservation.
  • Mignardises are a secret treat we give you at the very end of the meal to take with you…or eat as you linger with your new besties all night long!
  • Dinners are $60 per person, plus tax.

Savory Dinner highlights and previews for 2013

Last year I was honored to cook a series of spectacularly popular (if I do say so myself…) savory dinners in our little back room at the shop.

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This year I’ve planned one dinner a month, starting in early May and ending in October (when our holiday chocolate orders become so intense that doing anything but making chocolates becomes impossible). I wanted to share with you some highlights of the menus I’m planning, but unfortunately I don’t have dates yet for most of the dinners. My partners in the dinner series are Jacob, who takes care of all the logistics like designing the menu and the table and transforming the back room from a chocolate box-packing factory into a beautiful, twinkling dining room; and Lucy, who is our beautiful hostess and always makes herself flashcards about each dish so she can answer every diner’s question about it.

Without these two this little scheme couldn’t happen, and because Jacob sometimes tours around with indie rock bands as a sound engineer, it’s super-duper hard to make plans for when he’ll be around to work at his much more important job of setting the table.

So, we’ll be adding dates as soon as humanly possible.

In the meantime, it might be a good idea of subscribe to this blog (I think there’s a button somewhere where you put your email in and every ice age or so when I post something you’ll get an email…) so you’re the first to know when tickets go on sale. The very first thing we do is post a blog post about each offering, and post on our Facebook page.

We’re hoping to do each dinner for two or three days with ten seats at our big communal table for each day, but last time those 20-30 seats sold out in a few hours, so, ya know, stay in the loop! : )

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Coupla things:

  • Unfortunately we can’t accommodate substitutions for the menu, although if there is a complimentary alcohol beverage we can make you a virgin one—just tell us when you place your reservation.
  • You wanna bring your own alcohol? Bring it! (Glasses of whatever you’re drinking sent to the kitchen wouldn’t be turned down…)
  • Dinners contain all kinds of things like nuts, wheat, gluten, soy, & sugar—but never any dead animals or animal products. ‘Course not!
  • If you have a birthday in your party, let us know when you place your reservation.
  • Every menu has “mignardises.” These are a secret treat we give you at the very end of the meal to take with you…or eat as you linger with your new besties all night long!
  • Dinners are $60 per person, plus tax.

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Please note that these dishes are only partial highlights of the menus—each menu will be 8-12 courses (yep) and will definitely be changing depending on what I can weasel out of farmers that week. There are just a few teasers and working ideas to get you excited. 

May 2013: Imagined Shanghai

  • Lychee and pink grapefruit slushy
  • Xiao long bao: soup dumplings: pockets of tender dough with a soupy surprise
  • Braised eggplant with stinky tofu
  • Hushi Suanla Geng: Hot and Sour Soup with woodear mushrooms and daylily buds
  • Dry fried green beans
  • Hand pulled street cart noodles with XO sauce and fried arame
  • Ma-po tofu
  • Dessert congee
  • Corn ice cream with burnt sugar caramel
  • Mignardises

Early June 2013: Forager’s Delight

  • May wine with Japanese knotweed straws
  • Almond deviled eggless eggs with backyard chives and sautéed daylillies
  • Schav (Yiddish sorrel soup) with garlic chives, white chicken mushrooms and fried pickle lace
  • Creamed spring spinach, garlic mustard, and dandelion with burdock
  • Beet salad with woodruff, cashew cheese, radish, yuzu, and pine oil dressing
  • Spring mushrooms (ideally morels and chanterelles, we’ll see what’s out there in the world!) with ramp béarnaise
  • Lilac sorbet with strawberry flowers (if Pete will sell me some, even though “Why would you want the flower, when a few weeks later you could have a STRAWBERRY?” “Because it’s pretty, Pete! Please!”) and fraises du bois (foraged by moi, those)
  • White chocolate mousse with chamomile sauce
  • Mignardise: Spruce sablee cookies

Late June/Early July 2013: Early Summer in Paris

  • Vodka gimlet with basil-meyer lemon syrup
  • Socca (chickpea flour crepes) with braised Belgian endive
  • Soupe au pistou with creme de pissenlits (dandelion cream)
  • Compressed asparagus with nasturtium leaves, candied peas, and baby leek vinaigrette
  • Molecular nicoise salad with olive oil spheres
  • Potato gratin with swiss chard
  • Shiitake stroganoff with straw potatoes
  • Crêpe cake with fresh Huguenot Street mulberry jam
  • Chocolate chervil tart with tempura strawberries and mint
  • Mignardises

Late July 2013: A holiday in Corsica

  • Roasted lemonade with vanilla bean muscat
  • Minestra with heirloom beans, cabbage, applewood smoked potatoes
  • Fresh apple and parsley vinaigrette with lamb’s quarters
  • Pea mousse with lemon
  • Mediterranean braised green beans
  • Swiss chard cannelloni with eggplant fries
  • Lavender-melon soup
  • Torta Pisticcina (chestnut flour tart) with candied zucchini
  • Mignardises

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August 2013: Mad Men Summer

  • Peach punch with thyme
  • Barbecue potato chips with caramelized onion and shallot dip
  • Heirloom iceberg lettuce salad with cashew blue cheese dressing
  • Cream of tomato soup with fried curly parsley
  • Macaroni and cheese casserole with croissant crumbs and potato cracklings
  • Gin and Tonic gelee shots
  • Deep dish peach pie
  • Chocolate-covered neapolitan ice cream bombe
  • Mignardise: Chocolate caramel nougat bars with chocolate Bavarian cream

September 2013: Smoke and Spice (for people who like spicy, super weird dishes)

  • Manhattan with local whiskey and smoked ice
  • Citrus salad with fried rosemary, olives and long pepper
  • Green chile corn chowder with smoked oyster mushrooms
  • Invisible ravioli with homegrown tomato ragoût
  • Cauliflower with rye crumbs and sage air
  • Salim: Thai green bean noodles with incense-smoked coconut syrup
  • Grilled pineapple tart with raspberries and aleppo pepper cream with oven dried pineapple
  • Mignardise: Fiery hot pepper smoked sea salt caramels

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October 2013: Fermentation Fetishist’s New York Deli

  • Pickleback
  • Shrub
  • Soft sourdough pretzels with violet mustard
  • Beet and celery root tartare with horseradish and caraway
  • Beer brined kale salad with yuzu kosho
  • Onion soup with sage, croutons, cashew cheese “truffle” slices, and lemon peel
  • Tiny tempeh reuben with four homemade fermentations (gin caraway sauerkraut, sourdough rye, cashew cheese, housemade tempeh)
  • Peaches and cream ice cream cake
  • Mignardise: Black and white cookie with white miso

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It’s going to be a fun year!