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Six Chefs Gather for Nao-USA Today Dinner


Six of San Antonio’s chefs will be appearing together in a dinner March 13 that’s being sponsored by Nao Restaurant and USA Today.

Geronimo Lopez

Geronimo Lopez

The chefs include:

  • Geronimo Lopez: Nao Restaurant
  • Alain Dubernard: Nao Restaurant
  • Johnny Hernandez: La Gloria
  • Andrew Weissman: Il Sogno
  • Steve McHugh: Cured
  • Michael Sohocki: Restaurant Gwendolyn

The event will be at Nao in the Pearl Brewery, 312 Pearl Parkway. It begins at 6 p.m. with a reception and chefs demonstrations, followed by dinner at 7 p.m.

Johnny Hernandez

Johnny Hernandez

The meal will include a six-course dinner with wine pairings, live entertainment and chef commentary of the dishes. The price is  $100 per person plus tax and 17 percent tip.

For pre-paid reservations, call 210-554-6484.

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Events: Luke and Mardi Gras; NAO Chefs and More


Featuring six of San Antonio’s most well-known chefs, Nao and USA Today are excited to present “Experience Food & Wine in Texas” on Thursday, March 13 from 6 – 11 p.m.
Chef Johnny Hernandez of La Gloria

Chef Johnny Hernandez of La Gloria

While focused on ingredients that come from the Lone Star State, this event is an opportunity to taste the cuisine of chefs including Geronimo Lopez and Alain Dubernard of Nao, Steve McHugh of Cured, Johnny Hernandez of La Gloria and Michael Sohocki of Restaurant Gwendolyn and Andrew Weissman of Il Sogno,in one spectacular meal. To start up the evening, guests will have the chance to join the visiting chefs, all of whom are CIA alumni, as they come back to cook at their alma mater.

The six-course dinner will begin at 7 p.m. and will feature wine pairings with each course. There also will be live music. Tickets are now on sale for $100 per person and can be reserved by calling Nao at 210-554-6484.
Party like it’s New Orleans!

Luke San Antonio is bringing the flavor of New Orleans straight to Texas with a special Mardi Gras party on Fat Tuesday,  March 4,  from 3 p.m.- 8 p.m.

The event takes place during Luke’s weekly extended happy hour. Featured drinks include a signature Hurricane cocktail and Abita Beers on tap, including Amber, Purple Haze, Turbodog, Restoration Pale Ale and Mardi Gras Bock. For those who want to start Mardi Gras festivities early, we’ve attached our Hurricane recipe below.

crawfish1Luke San Antonio will be giving away T-shirts and there will be opportunities to win John Besh’s Mardi Gras-themed Besh Boxes. see more at beshbox.com.

Chef John Russ will be serving New Orleans party fare, listed below, at happy hour rates:

$2 King Cake with chances to win Besh Box
Hot Boiled Crawfish
$5 Gulf Shrimp Étouffée
$3 Andouille Jambalaya
$4 Peeler Farms Fried Chicken Wings
Hurricane glassIf you want to make your own Hurricanes for Mardi Gras, here’s a recipe from Besh Restaurants.
*
Hurricane Recipe
1 ounce tangerine-infused rum
1 ounce bourbon barrel-aged dark rum
2 ounces pineapple juice
2 ounces orange juice
1 ounce passion fruit juice
3/4 ounce pomegranate syrup
Pour ingredients over ice in a shaker and shake. Pour into a hurricane glass and garnish with fruit slices, such as a slice or orange or pineapple.

 

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Get Ready for a New World Flavors Tour at NAO


Geronimo Lopez

NAO, the Culinary Institute of America’s restaurant at the Pearl Brewery, 312 Pearl Parkway, is offering a series of lunches focusing on the flavors of the New World.

Each includes a cooking demonstration led by the restaurant’s executive chef, Geronimo Lopez.

The series begins Jan. 17 and ends Feb. 7. The lunch classes will only be offered on Wednesdays and Thursdays and will include five courses as well as wine, tax and tip for $100 a person.

The schedule is as follows:

Jan. 17 — An Insider’s Tour of the True Mexican Kitchen

Jan. 23-24 — Argentine Treasures

Jan. 30-31 — Peru: From the Pacific to the Andes

Feb. 6-7 — Brazilian Cuisine: The Cutting Edge.

The lunches begin with a reception at 11:30 a.m., followed by the meal from noon to 1:30 p.m. Only 20 guests will be seated for each special lunch, so prepaid reservations are necessary. Call (210) 554-6484.

 

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An Evening of Chefs, Cellars and Camaraderie


A member of the NAO team prepares bowls for Chefs and Cellars.

Chef Jesse T. Perez (right) plates one of his dishes.

It’s a fairly simple recipe. Culinaria’s annual Chefs and Cellars brings together a few of the city’s best chefs with some finely aged wines from private cellars. Nothing complicated, right? Yet the end result is a gustatory delight that always gains an alchemical element that comes from the camaraderie that occurs whenever people share common — or in this case, uncommon and exceptional — food and wine.

Kampachi, Uni and Yuzu Kosho from chef John Brand.

Sunday night’s dinner, held in the kitchens at the Culinary Institute of America, San Antonio, featured five teams going all out to create a memorable evening, which may explain why the event was sold out months in advance.

Chef Jason Dady and his crew presented an evening of tapas inspired by a recent visit to Spain and elBulli. Among the more than two dozen small plates he offered were salt-roasted prawns, boquerones, pan tomate, bone marrow tartare, corn pudding on a lime wedge, foie gras-eel croissant and garbanzo bean stew with lobster. Wine merchant Woody de Luna offered a series of Spanish wines including a 1978 Gran Reserva CUNE Viña Real and 2009 Raventos i Blanc de Nit Rose Cava.

Chef Johnny Hernandez plates a dish.

John Brand from Las Canarias and Ostra paired several types of sashimi-style seafood (Kampachi, Uni and Yuzu Kosho) and smoked roe with at 2001 Chablis Grand Cru Vaudésir Jean Paul Droin from Scott Duncan’s collection. He playfully presented a Monterey Bay sardine inside a decorative tin while Oregon sturgeon and American caviar were served in a salt cod box. Red deer striploin and foie gras with maitake mushrooms were paired with 1996 Chateau Cantemerle Haut-Medoc Bordeaux.

Jason Dady (left) slices Jose Andrews’ Jamon Iberico.

Lobster al Pastor was the starting dish from chef Johnny Hernandez, who followed it up with a chile relleno with cochinita pibil, a beef short rib with mole, and a grilled New York strip with plantain tamarind demi and a huitlacoche tlacoyo.

Chefs Jesse T. Perez and James Moore were partnered to showcase two talents who are opening restaurants in the Pearl Brewery this fall. Perez showed off plans for Arcade Midtown Kitchen, which specializes in American fare, while Moore, known for his work at Max’s Wine Dive, will be in charge of the Boiler House Texas Grill and Wine Garden. Among the dishes they served were a fresh lobster soft taco with sweet potato, shrimp and grits, Heritage pork belly with Granny Smith compote, red beet sorbetto, and smoked lamb chop and mushroom. Phil Seelig and Hien Nguyen offered the wines, including Pol Roger Brut Rosé 2002, two vintages of Sassicaia and 1975 Croft Port.

Chef John Brand’s team prepares a dish.

New to the event this year was the team from the CIA’s NAO under the direction of chef Geronimo Lopez. New World flavors and cocktails included honey-sous vide sweetbreads, pan-seared squab, cherry-smoked xuxu salad and wood-roasted wild boar chop. The pair of cocktails included La Entrada, made with cachaça, maraschino and Crème Yvette, and Interludio, a mix of grapefruit, Aperol, Campari and Pisco. Richard and Bunny Becker offered the wines to go with the meal.

It didn’t take much time before the guests started comparing plates and even sharing a few bites or sips — and the real reason this evening is a success each year became readily apparent.

For more information on upcoming Culinaria events, click on the ad at the top of the page. The next event is Feastivàl on Oct. 7.

Red deer striploin with foie gras, spice bread, a parsnip puree and maitake mushrooms from chef John Brand.

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