The Tasting Panel magazine

April 2014

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32  /  the tasting panel  /  april 2014 CHEF TALK by Breanne DeMore/ photos by Susan Sabo "T hat's what we're going for!" laughs Blackhouse Hospitality Management Director of Operations Scott Young, CS, CSW, WSET III, when told the team—including owner Chef Tin Vuong and co-owner Jed Sanford—was unstoppable. Two years ago, they started at Abigaile, a brewery and restaurant in Hermosa Beach, CA, and very quickly showed off their style—"worldly" only begins to cover it, the menu covers at least four continents. Since then, the team hasn't slowed down one bit. A little over a year ago, WildCraft Sourdough Pizza opened in Culver City. "This is authentic, Neapolitan pizza, made in a brick wood-burning oven sent to us straight from Naples, Italy. Basically, everything but the cheese is handmade on-site," says Chef Tin. With a wine list that revolves around Italy, and a few key California staples, and 24 taps of craft brews and wines, including several Abigaile Brewery favorites, the pizza joint underwent a two week long renovation in mid April and now has a full liquor license. Young says, "The new cocktail menu will include craft cocktails with exciting, fresh flavors to match the mood." Nine months ago came the team's next offspring, Little Sister. A unique blending of dishes from a plethora of Southeast Asian countries, this restaurant's menu is full of pleasant surprises. "It's definitely not traditional," explains Young. "But the heart of the flavors are true." Recently upgrading their wine collection—including three wines using the Coravin system—Chef Tin and Young collaborate on all of their menus. "Chef Tin and I talk about what we want and the style we're reaching to create. The collaborative intention is to match the wine list to the cuisine and vice versa. On occasion, Chef Tin will create a dish inspired by, and using, a wine that we have decided to serve." Proving their momentum once again, the latest venture from the team is two month old Día de Campo (slang for a day out with friends or a picnic) located in Hermosa Beach. The cuisine, Baja-inspired seafood, with an East L.A. twist features eight different ceviche-esque dishes, shared plates to feed two to three guests and a "Para Todos Mis Amigos" portion of the menu featuring whole wood-grilled lobster, fish and a bone-in carnitas meant to share with friends. Young created an agave-focused spirits program with local and South of the Border–inspired wine and beer selections from regions including Temecula, Malibu, Baja, Patagonia and Uruguay. "A wine list should always be fun," says Young. "I like it to be insightful and interesting whether you're a wine expert or the average Joe—it should always be approachable." It seems as if Young, Chef Tin and Blackhouse Hospitality Management may have figured out the delicious formula for rapid-fire success. Unyielding CHEF TIN VUONG AND DIRECTOR OF OPERATIONS SCOTT YOUNG OF BLACKHOUSE HOSPITALITY MANAGEMENT WON'T BE STOPPED Chef/Owner Tin Vuong and Scott Young, CS, CSW, WSET III, Director of Operations of Blackhouse Hospitality Management at Little Sister in Manhattan Beach. A few of the mouthwatering dishes at Little Sister: imperial rolls, shaky shaky beef and quick-fried scallops. Handcrafted in a 1921 copper still with single estate wheat, ABSOLUT ELYX is the culmination of hundreds of years of Swedish spirit and vodka-making tradition. ABSOLUT ELYX® VODKA. PRODUCT OF SWEDEN. 42.3% ALC./VOL. DISTILLED FROM GRAIN. ©2014 IMPORTED BY ABSOLUT SPIRITS CO., NEW YORK, NY. AWARD-WINNING, REMARKABLY SILKY VODKA San Francisco World Spirits Competition WINNER BEST VODKA WINNER DOUBLE GOLD MEDAL TP0414_001-33.indd 32 3/21/14 11:53 AM

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