This past week we did two tastings here at our Willabys “Tasting Room” with some prospective clients and it reminded me what an important part of our guest services this is.
On Friday we had the parents of a future bride here from Chicago and we tasted them on a summery menu of things that reflect the months when their daughter’s wedding will be. They had requested some particular items and I was happy to cook them what they had wanted to try.

They had wanted to taste some gnocchi in a brightly flavored “Caprese” sauce with fresh heirloom tomatoes, basil and mozzarella; a smoke grilled salmon with a sprightly roasted red pepper/roasted sweet corn sauce; and a “classic” Ratatouille of Summer Vegetables. It was fortunate that I was able to get those ingredients, many of them at farm stands just getting ready to close down for the year, and ironic that we would be tasting such summer flavors with the November weather here in Salem plunging down to 40 degrees and below.

Although they were tasting between lunch and dinner, they were quite happy with what we served them and, hopefully, were able to picture tasting it under the warm summer sun. We look forward to seeing them again next June or July.

Our second tasting was a menu that I had devised and reflected more the food that one would like to eat on the rainy and chilly Sunday date we had for our tasting. Our future bride had to leave her future groom at home, he was exhausted from his around the clock vineyard work at harvest time, but she was here for our noon tasting.

Our tasting menu offered a Grilled Local Salmon w/Pommery Mustard Sauce with Wild Rice; Bacon Wrapped Roast Chicken Breast with a Chanterelle-Thyme Cream Sauce; and finally, Pinot Noir Braised Short Ribs with Root Vegetables, served over a Celery Root-Yukon Gold Puree.
The food came out wonderfully and after two bites our guest looked up and said, “Where do I sign up?”

So if you have an important day coming up in your life, please, let us create a menu for you; come and taste it with us, and let us put your mind at ease about the food you will be serving your guests on this special day.

I am looking forward to meeting you, discussing your special meal, and finally, cooking it so that it is just the way you like it and want it.

Chef David