Seasonal inspirations and a diverse protein collection transform a classic comfort food into a contemporary menu hit.
This article first appeared in the 1 October 2007 issue of Restaurants & Institutions (R&I).
R&I is the USA's leading source of food and business-trend information and exclusive research on operators and restaurant patrons. Editorial coverage spans the entire foodservice industry, including chains, independent restaurants, hotels and institutions. To find out more about R&I, visit its website here >>
By Allison Perlik, Senior Editor
Vegetarian Pot Pie (pictured above) Parc 55 Hotel, San Francisco. Seasonal ingredients such as zucchini, yellow squash, mushrooms, fingerling potatoes and fennel help Executive Chef Brian Healy adapt his recipe to menus year-round. At service, the crust is trimmed from the pot and topped with vegetables and silky velouté sauce highlighted by coriander and truffle oil.
Chicken Pot Pie
Tiff's Casual Grill & Bar, multiple locations. Crumbled cornbread topping differentiates the otherwise traditional preparation of this pie, a best-selling weekly feature for the Pine Brook, N.Y.-based casual-dining chain. The subtly sweet topping complements savory components underneath: diced chicken breast, carrots, onions, leeks and celery in a simple velouté sauce.
Steak and Potato Pot Pie
Auntie Em's Kitchen, Los Angeles. At her casual cafe, bakery and catering company, Chef-owner Terri Wahl's hearty recipe calls on the deep, satisfying flavor of braised beef in place of chicken or turkey. Pulled rib meat is tucked into a large ramekin beneath a flaky crust, alongside traditional vegetables in cognac-laced beef gravy.
Lobster Pot Pie
Saltwater, Detroit. Tableside presentation in copper pots lends elegance to Chef-owner Michael Mina's signature shellfish rendition at his first Midwest restaurant, inside the new MGM Grand Detroit. Rich lobster cream blankets pearl onions, mushrooms, baby carrots, red potatoes, squash and zucchini, while shaved black truffles add extra opulence in season.