Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Hilton Austin Lunch in the Kitchen

I was fortunate to be invited to the chefs table in the Hilton Austin kitchen to experience a lovely lunch prepared in some forward thinking ways.

All the chefs involved did a fabulous job of presenting each course and giving a demo on how it was put together.

Ravi Nage, Executive Chef (pictured left) introduces the other creative chefs in the kitchen.
David Miller, Sous Chef (not pictured), Kristen Groth, Chef Garde Manger (middle) and Elissa Lewis, Pastry Cook (right).
Here is the menu for lunch:
Cosmopolitan Crab Martini with Radish Sprouts
Shitake mushrooms, Endive
Sweet Mermouth "Cosmo" Vinagrette

Austin Mixed Grill
Breast of Chicken, Petite Filet Mignon and Giant Shrimp
Rosemary Jus and Valencia Orange Butter
Italian Vegetable Risotto
Brown Butter Brocollini, Roman Style Carrots

Chocolate Pate and Raspberry Napoleon
Rose Pearls, Pomegranate Molasses
Lime Scented Ceme Fraiche

Coffee and Liqueur Shots

Chef Groth shows us how she makes the "cosmo" appetizer.

Chef Miller prepares our Mixed Grill entree.

Yack, I can't believe he is holding that critter.

That is a big bowl of butter! The shrimp is soaking in it.

Over medium heat he cooks the petite filet and the shrimp.

I thought this was the coolest part of the luncheon. I don't have the exact directions, so bare with me as I paraphrase. Chef Lewis is using a syringe to carefully drop beads of rose water into a particular liquid (this is chemistry folks).

These droplets form a rubbery exterior and the inside stays liquid form. After just a few seconds she uses a slotted spoon to move the little "pearls" from one bowl of liquid to the next, to the last one which is water for a quick rinse.... then voila, she has the coolest little bead of flavor to decorate our desserts with.

She is letting each of us taste the rose water pearl she created.

There it is. Beautiful!

Our Mixed Grill Entree.

My favorite course!

I thought this was a wonderful finish. Hot and thick espresso along side a chocolate truffle with some kind of liquor inside.


  1. Wow! What a great experience! I'm jealous.

  2. I'd love to join that.... Regards from Brunei...


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