Red Kuri Squash / Duck / Chocolate / Sunflower Sprout
Chef Curtis duffy
As with all of the dishes at Grace, this is a beautifully balanced plate. Since Grace is one of two Chicago restaurants with three Michelin stars, they carry a weight of influence in the mid-west and across the nation.
- Red Kuri Squash - A thick-skinned, tangerine-colored winter squash. Red Kuri Squash looks like a small pumpkin without ridges and has a flavor similar to chestnut. Red Kuri Squash is also commonly called" Japanese squash". Japanese ingredients have massive frequency across major restaurant influencers' menus.
- Duck - Duck is obviously a very classic protein, but is also being seen with more momentum in the past couple years than we've seen previously.
- "Out of context confection flavors" - This dish uses dark chocolate, which most consumers only attribute to dessert concepts (except for some regional Mexican mole recipes). Chocolate really brings all the components together in this dish — the creamy, nutty flavor in the Red Kuri Squash; the dark, rich meaty flavor of the duck; and the herbaceous, earthy flavor of the sunflower sprout.
- Sunflower Sprouts - Sunflower sprouts are tiny, but if grown with attentive care and nutrient-rich soil, they can burst with fresh herbaceous flavor. Odds are, Grace is sourcing theme locally from one of the many Chicago urban farm operations. Yes, we know you know "local" is popular, nevertheless sourcing locally is incredibly meaningful and has a powerful systematic impact.
Benevolent Philanthropist cocktail: George Dickel No.8 Tennessee Whiskey / Zucca Amaro / Strawberry + Lemon / Egg White / Pink Peppercorn
Not only is the name of this cocktail terrific, but this classic egg white cocktail really stands out with its balance of being traditional in nature, while extremely modern in execution:
- Use of origin based spirit, Tennessee whiskey;
- Unique amaro;
- Highlighting peppercorn varietal is popular, especially "pink" peppercorn usage in mixology — adds a nice spicey bite to citrus forward beverages.
Note: This cocktail comes highly recommended by the Brisan team (we dare you to just drink one!).
Almond Brown Butter Cake / Mission Fig / Orange Blossom Labneh / Mud Creek Oranges
Pastry Chef Dana Cree
- Brown Butter: The roasty, slight savory flavor and aroma depth brown butter brings to a dish is a core building block of culinary. It has also become a big (delicious) buzz word.
- Fruit Varietal: "Mission" Fig — by additionally calling out the varietal, added transparency is provided. Transparency is key driver for food and beverage marketing right now and arguably for the rest of this century.
- Unique Citrus: We're seeing a lot of momentum around Cara Cara, Bergamot, Blood Orange, etc. Although Orange Blossom is more floral forward than bright citrus, it's resonating extremely well with consumers (especially with dessert and mixology menu concepts).
- Cultured Dairy: Novel, origin associated cultured dairy is on the rise. Labneh is a middle eastern strained, cultured dairy product. Labneh can be: 1) strained yoghurt, yoghurt cheese or Greek yoghurt, or 2) the cheese made from salted, strained yogurt by draining its whey.