This is what happens when you hire the David Martin House Party to play at your event, where you round up your city’s best chefs and mixologists for a bunch of adventurous people primed and ready for feast and merriment on a Saturday night. And start doing Abba covers.
That was enough for Chef Ranjan Dey (New Delhi Restaurant) to unleash his Saturday Night Fever dance moves to rival the Maker’s Mark team. I’m no whiskey connoisseur, but I thought the sweet and tangy Tamarind Cabernet reduction on his cubes of Achar Boti Kebab – charcoal-grilled Indian spiced lamb – paired very well with a swig of the beverage.
In the same way that Friday’s dinner was a tribute to the Pig, Saturday’s dinner was served up in homage to the LAMB. Sponsored by the California Lamb Producers, this dinner was also a “Foodraiser” to benefit the Golden Gate Restaurant Association Scholarship Foundation. The money raised will be used to fund scholarships for Bay Area students enrolling in culinary and hospitality programs.
There seemed to be a smaller variety of lamb cuts (shank or shoulder) and cooking methods (grilled, roasted, pulled) when compared with the Hog In The Fog, but the chefs were no less creative. Such as Suzette Gresham’s (Acquerello) Lamb Jam Slam: a thin slice of lamb wrapped around soft ricotta cheese with a side of cranberry salsa and drops of cranberry gelee.
Or, Jen Biesty‘s (Scala’s Bistro) Lamb’s Tongue topped with an Egg and Crouton dressing, fresh Watercress sprigs and slices of Jalapenos. I’ll have to admit that I had reservations when I picked up the plate, but I’m glad I ignored them as the slices of tongue were as tender as gently poached chicken breast.
For the less adventurous, Dosa’s Anjan Mitra served up South Indian Lamb Kofta — Meatballs with Tomato and Spinach sauce, Raita and Cilantro-mint chutney. This was a fiery dish, which probably inspired the chef to create not just one, but two Plymouth Gin cocktails to douse the spice between bites.
We had Lamb Carpaccio with spiced chickpeas and yogurt from Elizabeth Falkner at Orson…
…mouthfuls of Lamb Birria Tostada with pickled onions and cotija cheese by Antelmo Faria at Tacolicious…
…while Kuleto’s Robert Helstrom took the classic route with a Lamb Ravioli with Eggplant Caponata drizzled with Almond Mint pesto.
But it wasn’t just all about meat that evening. Aziza’s Mourad Lahlou kept things simple with a Yellowtail crudo with Cucumber, Sea Bean and Black Garlic. With him on the seafood front were Phil West (Range), serving up freshly steamed Mussels with Sweet Corn Relish, and Annette Yang at Nettie’s Crab Shack offering an array of Dungeness Crab deviled eggs.
Also serving up Creamed Eggs was Scott Howard (Brick and Bottle), who topped his with – what else – a little cube of pork belly.
After an afternoon of tastings, a buffet of desserts at the Sugar Party (full recap to come on that!), and an evening feast such as this, we were more than ready to dance it all off as Sunday’s A Drag took to the stage with their entertaining covers of Cher, Madonna and Lady Gaga. I’ll let the pictures speak for themselves.