2014 Pebble Beach Food & Wine: Food Highlights

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Pebble Beach Food & Wine, the luxurious four-day festival from Coastal Luxury Management and Food & Wine magazine, drew dozens of talented chefs from across the United States. Here are some of the memorable food items from my two dinners and pair of Lexus Grand Tastings, presented in order of consumption. Click thumbnails for captions!

Rory Herrmann and Timothy Hollingsworth, who used to work together at The French Laundry, are working with Bill Chait on a restaurant at the Broad Art Museum in downtown L.A. At Dinner With the Stars of Los Angeles, they served Black Russian River Osetra Caviar with sunchoke panna cotta, celery branch gelee, pickled apples, young onions, and petite red watercress. Herrmann gifted a “fabulous” mother of pearl spoon to each diner.

Jon Shook represented Animal Restaurant with hamachi crudo inspired by Korean BBQ, dressed with galbi vinaigrette, diced pink lady apple, shaved radish, and mung beans.

Bestia chef/co-owner Ori Menashe stayed in L.A. to be with pregnant wife Genevieve, but Sous Chef Mikey Priore had his back, presenting Carrot & Ricotta Quadretti with Jimenez Farm rabbit ragu, carrot puree, rosemary, and lentils.

Republique chef/co-owner Walter Manzke, who clocked several years in nearby Carmel, featured Liberty Farms duck from Sonoma. Manzke roasted the breast and used thigh in puff pastry with porcini mushrooms, gizzards, livers and jus.

ink. chef-owner Michael Voltaggio served Corn Flake Flan with fermented blueberries, frozen yogurt and coconut granola. Duff Goldman said, “Michael Voltaggio made something that was delicate, subtle and amazing.” Voltaggio countered, “Like our friendship.”

Ray Garcia from FIG Santa Monica always goes big at tasting events, and frequently includes pork. At Saturday’s Lexus Grand Tasting, Garcia served pig head chilaquiles. As he said, “Head, belly, blood, there you go.” He didn’t mention the eggs, queso fresco, cilantro, or fiery salsa roja with pork jus, blood and salsa roja.

Hubert Keller, who’s found success in San Francisco and Las Vegas with Fleur de Lys, Fleur and Burger Bar, served Thai Coconut Soup with rock shrimp, tomato, Kaffir lime, orzo and micro cilantro at Saturday’s Lexus Grand Tasting.

Ford’s Filling Station chef-owner Ben Ford promoted his new cookbook, Taming The Feast, and served veal tartare with smoked tonnato sauce, capers, and lemon oil on garlic crostini.

Jonathon Sawyer, the inventive Cleveland chef behind The Greenhouse Tavern, Trentina and Noodlecat, made a splash at Saturday’s Lexus Grand Tasting with Beef Jerky Bucatini.

Back on The Inn at Spanish Bay ballroom for another star studded dinner, this time in honor of Melanie Dunea’s sequel to a popular coffee table book about chef’s last meals. She’s a photographer who’s also photographed celebs like Sting and Kanye.

Nancy Silverton of Mozza Restaurant Group of course delivered big at My Last Supper: The Next Course. Her hors d’oeuvre consisted of burrata with caviar, red onion, egg, and chives.

At My Last Supper: The Next Course, Toronto based chef Susur Lee featured a Crab & Tofu Cake with Indian spiced tomato jam.

Jonathan Waxman, chef-owner of Barbuto, celebrated Dungeness crab in a cocktail at My Last Supper: The Next Course with avocado, microgreens, plenty of olive oil, “a little bit if chile, and a little bit of love.”

Lee’s second contribution to My Last Supper consisted of Coffee & Cinnamon Marinated Squab Breast with apricot mustard, chicken liver paté, cruspy turnip cake, and crispy taro.

Tyler Florence, the dynamic Bay Area food talent, presented a Southern Feast tableside, including fried chicken, pickles, smoky black-eyed peas, creamed turnips and cornbread.

Silverton closed My Last Supper: The Next Course with an almond cornetto. The twice-baked almond croissant incorporated almond cream, orange blossom water, tangy yogurt gelato, and compote crafted from Harry’s Berries strawberries and rhubarb.

Justin Everett, executive chef of Murray Circle, a restaurant near the base of the Golden Gate Bridge, served Duck & Rainbow Chard Tamale with banana tomatillo Sriracha at Sunday’s Lexus Grand Tasting.

Linton Hopkins, chef-owner of Restaurant Eugene and Holeman & Finch in Atlanta, prepared pimento cheese sandwiches with bread & butter pickles and shaved country ham from Surry, Virginia.

Robert Wilson, chef/owner of Mattei’s Tavern in Los Olivos, served Duck Bologna with bread & butter peaches, duck fat mayo, and pink peppercorns at Sunday’s Lexus Grand Tasting.

Roy Yamaguchi, the Honolulu-based chef who’s built a global empire with Roy’s Restaurant served Pork Jowl with gochujang jam, Thai chile pickled fennel, and charred kumquat at Sunday’s Lexus Grand Tasting.

Andrew Zimmern , the outsized personality behind Bizarre Foods, served Jaternice Hash with Hot Sauce and Fried Quail Egg. What’s the hash? “It’s all the fifth quarter of the animal, heart, liver, lungs.” Which animal? “Pig” That’s a seriously good animal.


Joshua Lurie

Joshua Lurie founded FoodGPS in 2005. Read about him here.

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