I don’t know if I’ve dropped this bomb yet, but I’m two weeks in on a stage at the Grand Cafe, which is a bistro in south Minneapolis. What that means is that I’m working on a volunteer basis in order to learn how to work in a restaurant kitchen. It’s been a really positive experience so far, and I’m glad to have this opportunity. In exchange for my labor, John, the chef de cuisine, invited me to have dinner at the cafe for free!
What can I say? The meal I had last night blew me away. As each course came out, I immediately noticed little things that I had played a part in: the shredded duck, julienned pickled peppers, little leaves of frisée. It was a great feeling. I’ve never been so proud. The supreme icing on the cake was a last round of vodka shots in the Grand kitchen with the chefs. Bliss.
I didn’t take pictures, but here’s my recollection of what we had (I scribbled these down last night when I was drunk so NO GUARANTEES):
ocean trout tartare w/ truffle oil on a house-made cracker
seared scallops on a squash puree
spicy shrimp w/ pickled peppers and cheesy grits (paired with Pabst Blue Ribbon!!!)
blue cheese tart and duck confit salad
ahi tuna w/ leeks/escarole/bacon and potato puree
duck breast w/ potato gnocchi
pumpkin creme brulee