Above is my photo set from the recent “End of the World Dinner” at One Eared Stag, a much-hyped event bringing together many of the excellent chefs and restaurants from around Atlanta. I have not attended a collaboration dinner like this in quite a while, and certainly not one with so many parties involved. And a party it was – a lively evening, with plenty of booze, a loud room, and a group of chefs that debatably had more fun than the audience. That was fun to see, the chefs getting to spend some time hanging out once their shift was complete, I’m sure it’s rare for them to get see each other on a busy Friday night.
Some of the chefs killed it, starting off with a bang with outstanding hors d ‘oeuvres form Tyler and Andy of Abattoir/Bacchanalia. To be candid, I don’t know that anyone else that evening matched their excellence (or time invested), as their offerings, which included octopus ceviche on chicharrón, mortadella with truffle, brandade fritters, cured ham with pot likker dipping sauce, foie gras chocolate truffles, and more, were all, without exception, beautifully presented, creative, and delicious.
Cocktails and wines selected were all excellent choices, and flowed more than freely.
There were some failures. I had a great time, no regrets spending the money, but it was plain to see who spent time on this project, who reached, who reached too far, and who didn’t seem to taste their food before serving it. There was one dish that should have not hit the tables. I was also disappointed that Peter Dale didn’t offer up his dish; I’ve only eaten at The National in Athens once and it kicked ass.
A few other notables -
Drew Van Leuvan’s lamb carpaccio was very cool, the raw game taste offset nicely by the yogurt.
Ryan Smith’s dessert was f’ing crazy. Weird, but absolutely interesting. I think people were very split on it, but I loved trying it.
Drew Belline’s cauliflower custard with porcini was another one that was a little different, but a welcome change of pace at that point.
While the value and execution of some collaboration dinners is debatable, I doubt many people would tell you they didn’t have a good time, and it’s great to see people get creative, and watch the chefs kick ass, then kick back a little. It’s a trend I hope to see more often.
END OF THE WORLD DINNER MENU, DEC. 21
Hors d ‘Oeuvres
(Tyler Williams of Abattoir, Andy Carson of Bacchanalia)
Mayan Inspired Light Bites
The Full Nelson
Belle Meade Bourbon, Fidencio Mezcal, Ginger-Jalapeno-Honey, Lime, Bittermens Xoclatl Bitters
(Guy Wong of Miso Izakaya)
Japanese Kushiyaki of Wagyu Beef and Quail Eggs over Binchotan Charcoal with Tare Reduction and Kombu Salt “Steak and Eggs”
(Bruce Logue of BoccaLuppo)
“Chicken Parm” Smoked Bruschetta
(Robert Phalen of One Eared Stag)
Cold Smoked Escolar, Uni, Roe, Lardo, Nasturtium
(Josh Hopkins of STG)
House Cured Coppa, Hot & Cold White Anchovies
(Cody Taylor and Jiyeon Lee of Heirloom Market BBQ)
Kalbi Lamb Rib, Fried Acorns, 피클 무, Enzyme Redux
Byrrh, Del Maguey Crema, Fruit Lab Hibiscus Liqueur, Bittermens Tiki Bitters, Orange Peel
(Drew Van Leuvan of Seven Lamps)
Lamb Carpaccio, Crisp Belly, Cucumber, Raita
(Peter Dale of The National)
Shrimp in Green Plantain-Peanut Sauce, Fried Tails, Ecuadorian Salad, Lime
(Shaun Doty and Lance Gummere of Bantam & Biddy)
Mayan Beef Tenderloin, Sunchoke Stoemp, Shallots
(Drew Belline of Local 246)
Cauliflower Custard, Roasted Porcini, Preserved Georgia Pecan Truffles, Brioche
(Adam Evans of the Optimist)
Smoked Brisket Wrapped Scallop, Apricot, BBQ Beef Drippings
Jets to Brazil
Soursop, Novo Fogo Silver Cachaca, PUR Pear Liqueur, Scrappy’s Grapefruit Bitters, Grapefruit peel
(Ryan Smith of Empire State South)
Maize Panna Cotta, Onion, Cocoa, Honey, Xocolatl
(Taria Camerino of Sugar-Coated Radical)
Fried Apple Pie, Whiskey
Château d’Epiré Savennières, Loire Valley, 2009
Chateau Musar “Jeune Rouge,” Bekaa Valley, Lebanon, 2010
Damilano Barolo Lecinquevigne, Piemonte, 2007
Prinz von Hessen Riesling, Johannisberg, 2010
Gaia Estate Paia Thalassitis, Santorini PDO, 2007
Chateau Haut-Brion Clarendelle, Bordeaux, 2007