Last night, executive chef of Atwood Café, Derek Simcik, welcomed a few of his 30-yeas-of-age-and-under friends to prepare a multi-course meal paired with cocktails made with FEW spirits. Hence the name of the dinner, “FEW Kids on the Block.” Chef participants included Simcik, of course, William Johnson (Filini), Eric Mansavage (Farmhouse) and John Vermiglio (Billy Sunday). Cocktails were designed by Sterling Field (Carriage House), Alex Bachman (Billy Sunday), Alex Renshaw (Sable), Ray Anguiano (Atwood Café) and Patrick Hunter (The Tortoise Club).
Which member of this boys club stole the show? We are awarding the title of “best thing we ate last night” to Vermiglio with his cavatelli carbonara. The creamy sauce covering the fresh-made pasta subdued the acidity of the kegged gin and tonic made with FEW gin and housemade tonic. This dish was not only delicious because of its texture, but also its execution. The beautifully plated paste was placed in a line through the bowl while a runny yet contained egg yolk sat adjacent. The pasta was lovely on its own with a cheesy flavor but when combined with the yolk got an added creaminess. A bit of crisp was achieved with 10-day aged chorizo bacon, pickled peppers and rocket.
Overall, the entire meal was a success, with fun pairings and the company of young chefs and bartenders. But the pasta dish left us begging for seconds.