Prior to filming top chef New Orleans, the Saint Lucia native and former chef de cuisine of Scarpetta had never been (but always wanted to go) to Nola. And while her original honeymoon plan to visit the French quarter fell through, a different kind of passion landed her as runner up of Top Chef season 11 and in the city she’d always yearned for. Obviously the rest is history as it’s no secret that Compton packed her knives back in February in search of a creole cooking future, which brings us to her new venture and little unknown secret: Compère Lapin.
That’s what she’s calling her first solo endeavor at the new Old No. 77 Hotel & Chandlery, and we’ve got an exclusive on what she’ll be serving up. Conch Croquettes with pickled pineapple tartar sauce, Orecchiette with pork cheeks and arugula and Banana Zeppoles with salted rum caramel. As well as her final ode to Miami: Her pasta dumpling recipe from the queen of gnocchi.
Mash 5 potatoes. Add 3 egg yolks. Season with a pinch full of salt and a hand full of flour. Work the dough but not too much. It just should come together and feel soft and not breaking apart. And work it while its hot so it doesn’t get gummy. Roll it out, chop it up and cook it right away.
We’re gonna go ahead and safely say an iteration will find its way onto Compère Lapin menu, so should you not want to make it at home there’s always road tripping to New Orleans for a taste of the real thing.
Veritage Miami 2015 is just a few days away and Chat Chow TV got to sit down with one of the event’s marquee cooks, Dena Marino of Design District’s MC Kitchen to find out more about her restaurant, its popular dishes and what to expect at this year’s Interactive Dinner.
Marino got her training with acclaimed chef and restauranteur Michael C out in Napa Valley after a chance meeting with him. After working in his kitchen California kitchen for 6 years, he asked her to run his concept in Aspen where she stayed for the 13 years before coming to South Florida and opening MC Kitchen — and cheer on her beloved Miami Heat.
Since opening in 2012 the restaurant has received praise across the city and the U.S., most notably making the prestigious “Top 20 Best New Restaurants of 2013” list in Esquire Magazine.
For this year’s Veritage she will be cooking alongside four other notable South Florida female chefs in the interactive dinner on Friday night, April 17, teaching a crowd of 700 how to make a signature pasta dish that she serves in the restaurant.
Curious what Marino will be making at the dinner? Or what dishes are key to her menu? Find out that and more in the video above.
Last Fall, Chicago’s popular Siena Tavern opened its doors on Miami Beach in the iconic China Grill building. At the helm of the restaurant is the ever-charming Top Chef alum Fabio Viviani, who sat down with Chat Chow TV to talk all about Siena Tavern Miami location and its menu.
Viviani has been working in kitchens since he was 11 years old in his native Italy. By the time he was 28 he was the owner of five different restaurants when he decided to sell them all and come to America. Since then he has opened several successful restaurants throughout the country and has become a well-recognized and well-liked chef.
When Viviani and his partners decided bring the Siena Tavern concept to Miami, the restaurant team partnered up with local vendors like Bar Lab and Wynwood Brewing to help create the bar program. As for the menu, Viviani tells Chat Chow that he enlists his friends, family and co-workers to help narrow down the menu from 300 dishes to 35 “cravers.”
As for what deems a dish as a “craver” he notes, “we like to have the ‘wow’ kind of dishes, because if I can’t get the reaction where you want to come back for more there is some more work to do on it.”
Some of the most popular “cravers” on the menu are the house-made pastas, octopus, pizza and a meatball that’s so beloved it has it’s own Twitter account.
Curious how Viviani feels about taking over the legendary space? Or why dining is different in Miami versus Chicago? Find out those things and more in the video above.
Taquiza has become the go-to spot for authentic tacos and late night eats on Miami Beach. Started by Eating House and Freehand Miami alum Steve Santana, it serves up tacos on house-made masa that has everyone buzzing. Chat Chow TV sat down with Santana to find out more about them and the concept behind them.
The fast casual restaurant, located on the first floor of the Eva Hotel, is a no-frills taqueria serving up seven different types of tacos to a standing-room only crowd. Santana emphasizes that everything in Taquiza is homemade right down to its masa corn tortillas, which uses corn grown in small heirloom farms. Other popular menu times include the guacamole with hand torn chips, dry rubbed beef jerky, and its take on the popular ice cream treat the choco taco.
But Santana hasn’t always been a chef — he actually began his career doing digital work, but always had a passion for food. After helping coordinate one of the first-ever Cobaya dinners, he met chef Jeremiah Bullfrog and began assisting him on his food truck. His passion grew from there and before long he left the digital world and became a chef full time.
Curious how Santana learned how to master the masa tortilla? Or what tacos are his favorite on the menu? Find out all that and more in video above.
Oyster bars have been showing up all over Miami as of late, but the clear leader of the pack is Downtown Miami’s Mignonette. Started by Blue Collar’s Danny Serfer and restaurant blogger and lawyer Ryan Roman, Mignonette channels a classic oyster bar in a laid-back modern setting.
Those who are familiar with Serfer and Roman know their “bromace” is one born of the digital age. Serfer followed Roman’s blog while in New York City and the two eventually connected over Twitter. Soon after, Roman started coming into Blue Collar and a friendship was formed. A few years later they decided to take their relationship to the next level — no, not that level — and opened Mignonette together in the summer of 2014.
While oysters are very much the star at Mignonette, with the day’s varieties displayed predominately on a board in the middle of the restaurant, the restaurant also carries plenty of fresh Florida seafood prepared every which way along with a veggie board made famous at Blue Collar. But if you aren’t a seafood fan, no need to fret, they made it a point to add non-seafood items to the menu like the prime rib and turkey dinner for those more carnivore inclined.
Want to find out how Roman inadvertently blew Serfer off? Or how they came up with their catch phrase #fuckingfancy? Find out all that and more in the video above.