Tuesday, October 18, 2011

320 Main Employee Spotlight: Glenn Doyle

Meet Glenn Doyle an essential and unseen cog in the 320 Main machine. He’s been the loveable and loyal dishwasher at 320 Main since it’s opening and well before. How long? For “a couple decades” he coyly and smirkily remarks, avoiding any specific reference that might date him. He has worked at the location when it was Caroline’s, a restaurant owned by his aunt and uncle, as well as when it was Bayou St. John’s. Originally from Los Angeles, Glenn now lives in Long Beach. He’s a humble and understated man, with Californian-for-life tanned skin, friendly gray eyes, and a pretty sweet 'stache. An unofficial expert on the location, and one of the key players in 320 Main’s stellar service, we thought we should introduce you to Glenn:
Q: What has the switch been like from the previous restaurants at this location to 320 Main?
Glenn: The location was going downhill before. Since Jason and Rebecca have taken over it’s gotten so much busier. It gets pretty hectic on the weekends. They keep me busy back there [laughs]! They’re wonderful.

Q: What’s it like to work at 320 Main?
Glenn: We’re like a big family here. Jason and Rebecca are really cool. They took us all bowling for Christmas. It’s like that here. And James, the chef, I like him. He’s outgoing and I love his food.

Q: So you approve of the 320 Main menu James has cooked up?
Glenn: I love it. But I’m biased. Like I said, he’s family [smiles].

Q: What about this whole egg-on-the-burger thing that they’ve got going? Have you tried that yet?
Glenn: I’d never tried it like that, but it was good when I finally had it here. I was surprised.

Q: The “real” cocktails are a big deal on the 320 Main menu. Which drink is your favorite here? Not when you’re on the job, of course [laughter].
Glenn: [Laughs] Well I’m not a big drinker, but I think I’d ask Jason to make me a Screwdriver.

Q: What’s your best memory from working at 320 Main so far?
Glenn: Best time I had when the Schiffers took over was when they gave me a raise! 

Monday, October 10, 2011

Filet Mignon

Let us heave a collective sigh of relief: swimwear season is over and we can now eat to our hearts content - guilt free - because we can now hide under chunky fall/winter sweaters and layers of clothing. Don't waste any time getting back into hearty meals - jump in head first with 320 Main's savory Filet Mignon.

Beautiful heirloom carrots.
320 Main's Filet Mignon consists of 8 ounces of choice, grilled, succulent meat that practically melts in your mouth. The cut is so excellent that all Head Chef James Wilschke seasons it with is a little salt and pepper. The filet is topped with leek frites and served on a bed of roasted herb garlic mashed potatoes surrounded by a red wine demi-glaze gravy. If that weren't enough to make your mouth water, the dish also features fresh heirloom carrots. Heirloom carrots come in all different sizes and shades, adding a beautiful splash of color to this delicious meal. This is American cuisine at it's finest.

Pairs well with: "The Bowery" Manhattan cocktail and a slice of 320 Main's famous Carrot Cake.

Monday, October 3, 2011

The Bowery: 320 Main's Take on The Manhattan

Fall is finally arriving, slowly but surely. These hot 80 degree days are giving way to shorter, cooler ones. To usher in the autumn season, 320 Main is introducing it's newest addition to the cocktail menu, The Bowery. Named after the colorful neighborhood in Lower Eastside Manhattan, this cocktail is a variation of the the classic Manhattan.

"The Bowery is actually what cocktail people would call a Black Manhattan, a riff on the classic Manhattan cocktail using an Amaro as the Sweet Vermouth. John Coltharp of The Tasting Kitchen in Venice gave me my first taste of Ciociaro Amaro, I told him it reminded me of the original formula Amer Picon, (a pre 1970 Amaro I was lucky enough to taste) but a little sweeter and without the dried orange notes. This Amaro is so special, the cocktail needed it's own name." -Jason Schiffer

In Italian, amaro means "bitter" these bitters or amari are usually made by macerating various herbs, roots, spices, bark, flowers and/or citrus in a neutral grain spirit or wine. Sugar is then added before being barrel or bottle aged. The classic recipe for a Manhattan  includes equal parts rye whiskey and sweet vermouth with a dash or two of bitters. The 320 Main crew makes this Manhattan-style cocktail with Bulleit Rye Whiskey, Bitters and the Amaro Ciociaro. Bulleit Rye Whiskey is a fairly new label that is full of character - much like it's creators.

The Bowery: Bulleit Rye WhiskeyAmaro
Ciociaro and bitters. Click to Enlarge.
As the legend goes, in the 1820s a young Augustus Bulleit emigrated from Alsace-Lorraine, France.  Around 1840, Augustus Bulleit moved from New Orleans to just outside Louisville, KY and established himself as a tavern keeper, where he began producing small batches of bourbon. Hell bent on perfection, he experimented with countless recipes, finally finding one that met his expectations. Bulleit Bourbon was born. Bulleit bourbon sold throughout Kentucky, Indiana, and New Orleans where it quickly gained the reputation as the bourbon of choice for America's frontiersmen.

In 1860, while transporting barrels of whiskey from Kentucky to New Orleans, Augustus Bulleit mysteriously disappeared just outside of New Orleans. Walter Q. Gresham, Secretary of State under President Grover Cleveland formed a search party to travel from Indiana to New Orleans. The searchers came back empty handed, his body was never found. After Augustus’s disappearance, it seemed the making of his bourbon would disappear with him. However, in 1987, more than a century later, Tom Bulleit fulfilled a lifelong dream by starting a distilling enterprise inspired by the original recipe of his great-great-grandfather. [Bar None Drinks]

What do you get when you mix all these fine spirits and bitters together? The Bowery, a delicious take on the original with accentuated depth and richness that is perfect for fall.
Pairs well with: The Filet Mignon