–submitted by Mary Thompson; photos by Vicki Holschuh and Eagan Heath
Twenty Rotarians enjoyed an evening of haute cuisine and interesting conversation during our Culinary Arts Fellowship on December 4, 2017. Many thanks to Boris Frank (pictured here with Steve Wallman) for planning an innovative dining experience with Chef Tim Van Doren from Johnny Delmonico’s Steakhouse. Our server, Cynthia McDonald, was well known to our group for her service at our weekly Rotary meetings. She made the evening special.
Our first course began with Chef’s demonstration on how to correctly shuck oysters as we learned the difference between the briny East Coast oysters and the more fruity flavor of the West Coast variety. Also, it’s OK to eat oysters year round because they are farmed around the world dispelling the idea of eating them only in a month ending in “R”. The oysters were accompanied by a charred scallion mignonette and sparkling wine.
The entree played with our senses as the chef prepared beef tartare (a hit!), with warm grilled lettuce and horseradish blue cheese ice cream. For the less adventurous, like me, the tartare was cooked. And those who selected the vegetarian option delighted in beet tartare. The 2016 Meomi Pinot Noir was a perfect complement.
Photo 1: Mary O’Brien and Christine Beatty; Photo 2 from left: Mary Thompson, Loretta Himmelbach, Robert Holschuh and Larry Jenkins
To complete our dining experience, Chef prepared deconstructed s’mores finished with hickory smoke under glass.
Chef Van Doren received applause for our dining adventure. We will certainly return for another ultimate dining experience. And, Culinary Arts Fellowship Chair Loretta Himmelsbach reminded everyone of the next Culinary Arts Fellowship Event on February 5, 2018 at the Vignette Dining Club.