Locust Grove’s Sunset Sensations – June Featured Chef

Locust Grove Sunset Sensation DSC03146

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!!!!!

Locust Grove Sunset Sensation DSC03124

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)

Paired with
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.

Locust Grove Sunset Sensation DSC03133

The second course was
Coffee-ancho chili rubbed hanger steak with heirloom carrot risotto and garden herb chimichurri sauce

Paired with
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

Paired with
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
Tele: 845-452-3501

Arlington Wine
718 Dutchess Turnpike
Poughkeepsie, NY 12603
Tele: 1 866 SAYWINE (729-9463)

Copyright © by Norma Chang

About Norma Chang

I am the author/publisher of 2 user-friendly Chinese cookbooks: "My Students' Favorite Chinese Recipes (updated edition)" and "Wokking Your Way to Low Fat Cooking" A gardener who enjoys cooking and eating and loves to think outside the box A garden volunteer at Locust Grove Heritage Vegetable Garden Conduct hands-on cooking workshops for teenagers Conduct cultural programs for children and family Conduct healthy cooking classes for adults
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30 Responses to Locust Grove’s Sunset Sensations – June Featured Chef

  1. What a cool and delicious experience my friend 😀

    Choc Chip Uru

  2. Sophie says:

    What a gourmet dining experience & great & tasty looking too! A lovely review , Norma!!

  3. What a fun sounding event and gorgeous looking food. So glad you got to be there and taste!

  4. Eva Taylor says:

    What a great event, Normal, the food sounds wonderful; very good of you to volunteer, but a shame that you were not able to taste everything. The weather looks like it cooperated very nicely. The humidity finally broke in Toronto last night and plummeted from 90% to 30%, so it’s perfect patio Friday weather. Have a great weekend.

  5. Kim says:

    Oh my !everything looks amazing.
    And NOT one thing there Henry would even try!

    nice pictures and post Norma.

    Happy Gardening

    • Norma Chang says:

      Hello Kim,
      Henry may not try any thing but I think you would love all the dishes. You should see the gorgeous sun set.
      Hope you are having a good trip. Norma

  6. What a pretty first course!

  7. What a lovely event to have on a sunny day! It all looks very tasty. Nice to see a young man doing great work like that!

  8. Charles says:

    Hi Norma – that second course steak looks especially delicious – what a fun evening it must have been!

  9. ChgoJohn says:

    Now this sounds like a wonderful evening, Norma, and such a nice thing that you volunteered for it. About the only bad part was that you didn’t get to sample everything. Still, you took part in a great event with some fantastic food. And won’t it be something when Chef Ed sends you a few recipes! That’s very generous of him.

    • Norma Chang says:

      Hello John,
      I volunteer for all the Sunsent Sensations unless I am out of town. Most of the time I get to sample everything. This particular event was oversubscribed but the chef was OK with it, he is very popular in the area.

  10. Karen says:

    What a delightful event. The carrot risotto sounds so good and very different.

  11. Kristy says:

    Those appetizers look so good Norma! What a fun, tasty, and beautiful event. 🙂

  12. Sounds like a great volunteer experience Norma. I bet you’ve picked up a lot of great tips working with such accomplished chefs. I would love a bite of one of those salmon mousse profiteroles!

    • Norma Chang says:

      Hello Barb,
      I did not get to sample the salmon mousse profiteroles. I picked up tips about what I should order when I visit these establishments (the dishes that are too involved to make).

  13. Hi Norma, I love the salads on the plates, beautiful, both food and the sunset!

  14. Such a fun experience! The steak looks so good that I wish I could have a bite!

  15. Mel B says:

    Oh my goodness that looks delicious!

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