Wednesday night we had the opportunity to attend one of Stephanie Izard's (a Top Chef winner from Chicago) Wandering Goat dinner. These dinner parties take place at private residences for a group of people who are lucky enough to snag tickets before they sell out in 45 seconds.
The theme of Wednesday's dinner was sustainable seafood and the bar was stocked with beers from Dogfish Head and Three Floyds. (If only Dogfish Head owner Sam Calagione, pictured at the left, could have been there as one of the side dishes... hubba hubba! LOL)
Visual stimulations aside... let's move on to the venue. The Wandering Goat dinner took place at the world's coolest bachelor pad. The house was formerly a church in the Logan Square neighborhood. It was gutted and turned into a gorgeous house a few years ago with 2 kitchens!
The food was created before our eyes at one of the three stations in the 2 kitchens. You had to move around the house to get to try everything because the dishes all came out at different times.
So let's get to the food huh?
crisp calamari, pork sausage, bagna cauda, ruby grapefruit.
If you would have told me that one of my favorite flavor combinations of the night would come from a pairing of grapefruit, sausage, and calamari I would have said you were crazy. But there was nothing funny about this amazing dish. Loved it!
poached sturgeon, beef stew, melted brussel sprouts, black olives
While this wasn't one of our favorites, it was still a wonderful experiment with foods I would normally never put in my mouth (brussel sprouts and black olives) and the sturgeon was cooked perfectly!
crisp oysters, sesame leaves, bacon, french lentils, roasted mushrooms
This my friends, was my favorite of the night. That sauce had hints of lemon and garlic and the crisp french lentils... well I'm definitely going to have to figure out where to buy some of those. I don't even care for mushrooms but this dish was pure heaven.
seared scallop, black garlic, fermented black beans, manzanilla olives, celery
This guy was our least favorite of the night. I blame the fermented black beans. That's just not a flavor I can appreciate.
spot prawn soup, crisp pasta, fennel, creme fraiche
Those who know me, know that red peppers are my least favorite food in the whole world. As far as I'm concerned, they ruin everything they touch. They were featured quite prominently in this dish. Yet, I loved it. Just goes to show you, prepared the right way, anything can be delicious. Stephanie claimed this dish was the nights winner on her twitter page.
sliced hiramasa, crisp pork belly, aji aioli, meyer lemon
:( We didn't get to try this. I was so busy snapping pictures of it that I didn't reach out and grab one of these plates and it turned out, that had been all of the hiramasa they had left. A lot of people I spoke to said it was their favorite. Stephanie did serve us some of the pork belly ala cart though and it was scrumptious.
smoked trout salad, caperberry, blood orange, smoked almond
light, crisp, and refreshing. yum!
brandade, crisp potato, salsa verde, smoked tomato, shredded ham
We loved the crispiness of the potato and all of the fresh cilantro in the salsa verde. This was the last dish we had for the night and I can't remember much more about it...
black dog gelato
There were two different flavors of gelato, our favorite had toasted almonds and sea salt sprinked on top. I will never eat ice cream again without sea salt sprinkled on top. Soooooooo good!
Here's a couple action shots of the chefs plating things up for hungry party goers
Look how cool we are hanging with the Top Chef!
This dinner was not cheap but for the experience, it was worth every penny. We had great conversations, beer, and food like we'd never had before. What more can you ask for?