Menu of the Month: Romantic Dinner for Valentine’s Day

ROMANTIC INGREDIENTS AND DISHES Surf & Turf  Sous Vide Filet Mignon / Truffled Purple & Yellow Fingerlings / Lobster Succotash  Shrimp, crab or other seafood- while the aphrodisiac qualities of seafood may be exaggerated, foods that are high in zinc, like oysters (which contain a very high level of zinc) – are a known stimulant…

A California Culinary Experience

Exactly what is California Cuisine? Ask a dozen chefs and you’ll get at least a half a dozen different answers, but all of them will have 3 words in common: local, organic and sustainable. And that is where I start, in the farmers’ markets that abound in the SF Bay. Cal Cuisine has also been…

Salubrious Suppers

Just in time for the new year: Why just dine when you can eat your way towards good health and enjoy amazing food, all at the same time? ! I became intrigued with ingredients that do more than “no harm”, herbs, spices, vegetables, fruits and proteins that actually improve longevity, energy, digestive health and counter many of…

California Twist on Classic Italian

Winter just seems to speak Italian: comfort food, warm and welcoming. My formal culinary training began in the kitchens of New York City’s Little Italy, at the side of my best friend’s Italian grandmother. These roots are never far away as I develop menus and experiment with new dishes. Whether its playing with the way…

A Cuban Taste Adventure

Why just dine when you and your guests can take a virtual voyage to somewhere exotic? Let our Mixoligist pair a Cuban Bar Menu, and then add a tablescape that matches your menu. SIGNATURE COCKTAILS CHOPIN CUBAN COCKTAIL Vodka / Champagne/ Sprig of Mint MOJITO VOLSTEAD Fresh strawberries muddled / simple syrup/ vodka/ elderflower liqueur CEVICHE TASTING Scallops /Habanero /kumquat / sweet…

Client Reviews & Awards

From Bryon O. Jan 15, 2017,  5 STARS “I hired Chef Gray for a 40th birthday dinner for my wife. She prepared great food and felt amount of food served justified the cost would definitely recommend.” From Jenna B. Oct. 1, 2016, 5 STARS “Thanks so much for a fabulous evening! It turned out so much…

Say “Boujour” w/ Brunch a la Français

My Brunch: a Culinary Journey menus offer you a taste of Paris, Italy or Mexico. Or you can stay home for a Classic American Brunch. From our Bartender, “For a French brunch, I love doing a Pamplemousse Vesper, with fresh ruby red grapefruit juice, a French aperitif wine, such as Lillet Jean Reserve or Lillet Blanc and…

MODERN AMERICAN FARE

Long before I immersed myself in Italian, French, Mediterranean and Mexican cooking, I cooked at my mother’s side, learning to make what can only be called  classic American food: Roast Beef and Popovers, Brisket and Mashed Potatoes with Succotash, Chicken with Dumplings— this was the fare of my childhood. When it was clear that cooking was…

Tapas (partial listing)

Have a TAPAS PARTY or add a Romantic Spanish Dinner (Paella anyone?) to complete your menu! Recommended by our bartender: “Of course, Sangria (red or white) is a perfect accompaniment to Tapas. I also recommend Agua de Valencia (Cava, fresh-squeezed orange juice and Cointreau) or Pantera Rosa  (Vodka, Chambord, fresh-squeezed lime juice, Cava)” Escalvida From Spain’s Catalan…

Cal-Med

A menu, based on seasonally available ingredients, developed in consultation with Guest Chef Leslie Alamsha Omran, beings with Mezze- a selection of small dishes served to accompany alcoholic drinks as a course in the Middle East and Mediterranean Scroll to bottom for sample menu MEZZE Eggplant Rolls G Chinese eggplant/Mozzarella di Bufala/ roasted sweet red pepper/ fresh basil G Napa…

Seafood Specialties

Whenever possible, I cook with sustainable seafood, sourced from local fishermen who meet rigorous standards so as to guarantee the highest-quality. The following is just a sampling of the dishes I prepare. APPETIZERS House-cured Salmon / Dill / Meyer Lemon Crab Salpicon Meaning “hodgepodge” or medley in Spanish, in Mexican cuisine, the term refers to…

Appetizers

Planning a Cocktail Party, a happy hour before dinner is served or looking for an appetizer course a part of a formal seated dinner… Crudite Station Grilled Calamari (see feature photo) Antipasto Cheesemonger’s Board  Mini-Tlacoyos: nopalito (green), blue corn and achiote (orange) masas and broccoli / Queso Oaxaca and Sweet Potato / Goat Cheese fillings…

Modern Mexican Chef’s Tasting Dinner

 APPETIZERS Handmade Blue Corn Tortillas / Black Bean Spread/ Chorizo & Wild Mushrooms Black Bean Spread /Charred Panela & Avocado Tapenades / Flatbread Poblano / Black Olive / Fig  Hearts of Palm Mini-Tlacoyos: nopalito (green), blue corn and achiote (orange) masas and broccoli / Queso Oaxaca and Sweet Potato / Goat Cheese fillings with Poblano…

French Bistro & Provençal Specialties

I began my love affair with French cooking as a 16-year old au pair, living with a family just outside of Paris. Our family has close ties with France; with one son living in Paris, I am a frequent visitor and always updating my repertoire of French recipes! (scroll down to see additional menu selections following…

Super Bowl Sunday

There are so many ways to enjoy what to many is the most exciting Sunday of the year (in this case February 5, 2017). Below is a menu of favorites, re-invented. You may also want to check out:  Not Your Abuelita’s (Grandmother’s) Endless Taco Party Skewers and Kabobs Tasting Station or any of my other TASTING…

Peruvian Menu

From our bartender: I love when a host selects a Peruvian menu. It allows me to show off my Pisco Sours!   Menu selections gracias a Daniela Meza-Gray and her mother, Jennifer Bazan, who have generously cooked side-by-side with me and shared many of their family recipes! FOOD STATIONS (to be served during cocktail hour)…

SOUPS

Soups (and sauces) are the true measure of the mettle of a chef because they allow one to develop flavors like no other dishes can; balancing herbs and spices, proteins and vegetables, even fruit, to achieve a finished product that lets the ingredients shine. COLD SOUPS Fire & Ice: Chilled Avocado Soup / Chipotle Seared Shrimp…

Tasting Stations: Wraps & Rolls

Tasting Stations are a fun way to do dinner or a cocktail party. They don’t require traditional tabletop service (flatware, dinner plates, etc.), are great for traffic flow and especially work well if your guests are not arriving all at once or you don’t have enough space for seating for a more traditional dinner service….