Tonight, My Wife and I enjoyed some fresh red grouper. One of the benefits at iCorp, on occasion, we get to take home some really good products to cook at home. I seared the grouper in my cast iron skillet, crispy skin and all. I heated up some butter beans with smoked pulled pork and red onions and sauted some diced asparagus. As a sauce for the grouper, I sizzled some chunks of the pork in the pan and topped the fish with it.
At iCorp, we have been undergoing quite a bit of turn over. In August, a cook who had been there quite awhile and thought Stach would hire him as a sous chef was caught scratching himself with a glove on over his apron and pants and continued with making sandwiches for everyone. This is when Tex was hired. Tex used to work with Stach and I at NoBo. Another guy, who had owned a sandwich shoppe, took a position in another department that he was better qualified for. This was when we hired AMBP. She was an outside candidate that both Stach and our boss picked from three or four resumes. At the same time, we brought in a long time friend of mine who had staged with me at Upstairs/Downstairs and worked at NoBo after I had left. He recently left to pursue a position at a fine dining restaurant. Then there was Sloth, she could have been better if she would quit doing illicit drugs combined with medication for her depression Sloth was on 30 day probation and basically was terminated after her husband decided to do doughnuts in the parking lot after opening a can of Keystone Light. Just minutes after our ER (employee relations) department accepted her two week notice. We brought in one other guy, Lance, who is currently a night student at Culinary School of the Rockies.
Our entire front of the house staff has completely turned over. It started with one woman thought she could boss people around when our boss wasn't present and would deny doing so when confronted. She also complained about: the guys changing in the locker room, that the boxes were stacked to high, the boxes were in the way when they weren't stacked, we were using hot water from the hot water machine to "cook with," etc. Fortunately, she gave notice and left. At the same time, a girl up and quit the next day the first woman left. Then there was a mainstay who pretty much couldn't handle driving in the snow for over 45 miles to get to work. We turned over everyone in the FOH within six weeks.
As for fun menu items: Braised beef hearts with beets and smashed potatoes on Valentines day; pull wild boar sandwiches; wild boar osso bucco creamy polenta; venison chops with green chili demi glace roasted red potatoes; Colorado Bison barbecue with green chili barbecue sauce, mountain biscuit and corn casserole; and 50's comfort food chow line which included buttered peas and wild mushrooms, Texas style brisket, Bison chili, sherry cream of mushroom soup, layered jello cups, German chocolate cake, Key lime pie and various small dessert bites.
Upcoming events will include another menu change, more scratch items, excessively large parties (400+ people) and fine tuning our catering offerings. Next week we have an employee event that will include an all you can eat salad bar with some basic offerings that will test our fellow employees patience with healthier food options.
So that is it. Congrats to Richard Blais on winning Top Chef All Stars. I still think Jen Carrol should not have been eliminated in the second round, but that is how things go.