Saturday, March 28, 2009

Chef Ryan Scott


The evening of Tuesday, March 24th, found a group of us over at The Slanted Porch. Wine glasses in hand, we had wandered over from the Red Zinnia where we had gathered in anticipation of our "Team Building with Ryan Scott" event. Ryan, you may remember from an earlier post, was a participant in Season 4's Top Chef Chicago. He has been a guest Chef at The Porch these last few weeks, and he had agreed to do a cooking class/demonstration/dinner for us. We booked the event a few weeks ago, in between his trips to San Francisco to scout out locations for his new restaurant, trips to New York for his role as one of the spokespersons for Morningstar Foods, and trips to Southern California and ????? This young man is BUSY!

We entered through the back door of the restaurant into the immaculate kitchen, and took our seats in the bar stools that had been set up around one of the large stainless steel prep tables. The scent of garlic already filled the air and we watched as his prep cooks finished up some last minute details. Glancing at the brochures we had been given, my mouth was already watering in anticipation of what we would be preparing, and then later enjoying in the candle lit dining room. There were 11 of us total, and the atmosphere was fun and festive as the knives started flying, and the recipes were discussed in preparation of the first course - an amazing salad and homemade vinaigrette.

Over the course of the next three hours, we leaned basic knife skills, some tricks of the trade, and how to prepare some amazing food. Our dinner conversation was lively and animated as more and more dishes kept arriving out of the kitchen. Wine was poured, the pairings having been selected by Ryan's sommelier out of San Francisco, and the only way I could finish describing the meal would be to tell you this: If you get a chance, book your own evening event now, while he is still in town. Thank you Ryan, we had a great time!

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