June 10, 2011

{Food Events} David Burke Kitchen tasting and Vlasic Farmer's Garden launch

I almost didn't make it. I knew I would be late to the David Burke Kitchen tasting event that marked the launch of Vlasic's new Farmer's Garden pickle launch. After all, I was heading to SoHo after work and my new job is based in Long Island City, Queens (dangerously close to M. Wells).  By the time I arrived, everyone was finishing up their meal.  Happily, the PR ladies were able to get a few extra plates for me to try. I had the added bonus of dining one-on-one with Chef Mark Susz.
The David Burke Kitchen space was beautiful - sleek, yet cozy.  I bet this was the first time the bar had more garnishes on it than drinks!
Chef Mark Susz is Vlasic's culinary director. I had missed the hands-on pickle-making demonstration he had led, so he chatted about the process and the Vlasic Farmer's Garden pickles.  I liked the Zesty pickles - they had a nice bite to them. I also liked the mason jar look to the jar of vegetables. (The ingredient list was: cucumbers, water, carrots, red peppers, salt, vinegar, garlic, calcium chloride, spice, natural flavor, polysorbate 80, oleoresin turmeric with 1/2 pickle serving containing 300mg of sodium!)  Overall, these pickles aren't bad for a mass marketed good - though I'm still partial to my husband's homemade ones!

Then we chatted about food in general. I asked him about his favorite foods - sushi (a trip to Japan opened his eyes to real sushi), fresh pasta (that he now makes by hand with his very young kids), and his grandmother's pierogies (that he was so proud to replicate and serve to her).  I shared my childhood favorites, including a Mauritian peasant dish my parents would make with tomatoes, potatoes, carrots, onions, beef, thyme, and more. 
On to the food...My appetizer was a palate cleansing Pickleback Granite.  I don't believe there was any alcohol in this dish (according to Wikipedia, A pickleback is a type of shot wherein a shot of whiskey is chased by a shot of pickle brine. The pickle brine works to neutralize both the taste of the whiskey and the burn of the alcohol.). But I did appreciate the cucumber granita - aka an oddly good pickle snow cone.
(left) David Burke Pastrami Salmon wtih pretzel mustard, capers, red onion, and horseradish
(middle) Bison Tartare with egg salad, smoked tomato, mustard oil, and fingerling chips
(right) Chicken club with grilled chicken, bacon, chipotle mayo, red onion marmalade, pretzel roll, farmer's garden by Vlasic
Two signature David Burke items on this plate would bring me back to this restaurant - his Pastrami smoked salmon was amazing. It was a creative interpretation of the usual lox. The other dish I enjoyed was the Bison Tartare. Bison meat is much leaner than beef, so having it as a tartare was excellent. 
And finally, these beautiful cheesecake lollipops beckoned me like an old friend. We hadn't seen each other since my dinner at Fishtail but they were as sinfully decadent as I remembered. 

Disclosure: Vlasic provided me with this complimentary tasting and gift bag containing a couple of the Vlasic Farmer's Garden pickles. All opinions expressed are, as always, entirely my own.

1 comment:

  1. What a fabulous event! Thanks for sharing with us!


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