Ed (center) with his assistant, Sarah (left) and Joe of Arlington Wine (right)
The featured chef for Locust Grove’s June Sunset Sensation was Edward Kowalski of Lola’s Cafe & Crave Restaurant.
It was a gorgeous June evening and the lawn area by the flower beds (where everyone could mingle and stroll the beautiful grounds) was the perfect setting for the first course food and wine tasting, and what a tasting it was!!!!!
The first course was an assorted hors d’oeuvres
Smoked salmon mousse in profiteroles (left)
Eggplant crisps with fresh basil and homemade mozzarella (top right)
Wild vine polenta with whipped ricotta and house cured ham (bottom right)
2011 Apothic white
For the second course, the event was held in the West gallery. A cooking demonstration by Chef Ed and a brief wine lesson by Joe followed by tasting and wine pairing.
The second course was
Coffee-ancho chili rubbed hanger steak with heirloom carrot risotto and garden herb chimichurri sauce
2010 Domaine Wachau Gruner Veltliner
Next on the agenda was a tour of the Locust Grove Heritage Vegetable garden led by the on site horticulturists Tim Steinhoff and Susan MacAvery, both very knowledgable, you can ask any plant related questions and most of the time they give you an answer on the spot. If they are not sure, they will check and get back to you. Myself and all the other volunteers have learnt a great deal from them. A wonderful place to volunteer.
The third course was on the lawn by the mansion overlooking the Hudson River, and what a view that was, the sunset was awesome.
The third course was
Summer salad of baby greens, frisee, local strawberries, Coach Farm goat cheese espuma, snap peas, black pepper cracker and rhubarb-basil vinaigrette
2010 Wente Sauvignon Blanc
I did not get to sample all the dishes (I had to work. I am a volunteer at the event and this was one of the busiest.) but thoroughly enjoyed the ones I had the opportunity to taste. The heirloom carrot risotto was my favorite. According to chef Ed, making this risotto requires a few steps and is somewhat involved (translation: not that easy).
Awards winning Chef Ed, a native of Poughkeepsie (he grew up around the block where his establishments are located) is a 1998 graduate of the Culinary Institute of America. Started Lola’s cafe in August 2005 and Crave Restaurant end of 2009. These 2 establishments adjoining each other is located at 129-131 Washington Street under the Walkway Over the Hudson. Besides a team of capable chefs, he also has his father, a retired IBMer, working with him, how lucky can one get?
I asked him how he would classify his cooking and his reply was: Contemporary American.
While at the CIA, he was smitten with the Asian flavors introduced to him by Chef/Instructor Shirley Cheng, these flavors and many local products get incorporated into many of his creations.
Chef Ed promised a few recipes which I will post as soon as I receive them.
Above right photo: Chef with one of his admirer. She refers to him as her favorite caterer.
These 3 ladies and everyone attending had a grand time at the event
Chef Ed will also be the featured chef at the December 13 Sunset Sensation. He will be presenting holiday hors d’oeuvres, based on available seasonal products that people can duplicate at home.
Lola’s Cafe & Crave Restaurant
129 Washington Street
Poughkeepsie, NY 12601
718 Dutchess Turnpike
Poughkeepsie, NY 12603
Tele: 1 866 SAYWINE (729-9463)
Copyright © by Norma Chang