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Palm Beach Profile: The Dish on ‘Knife Fight’ Celebrity Chef Sean Brasel

By Eileen Louissaint, Altima Contributing Writer

As Meat Market’s very own Chef Sean Brasel prepares to duel it out in the kitchen on the Esquire Network during Season 4 of Knife Fight, our team went behind the scenes to get the real dish on Palm Beach’s celebrity chef. (Watch the episode during a Special Happy Hour at Meat Market on Tuesday, November 17th. Limited Attendance, RSVP below.)

Born and raised in Colorado, Chef Brasel launched his career as sous chef at Cliff Young’s in Denver. He attended Madeleine Kamman’s School for American Chefs in Napa Valley and shortly after began his business as a restaurant consultant. Chef Brasel and his business partner, David Tornek, opened several restaurants in Denver before moving to Miami, Fla where they introduced two restaurant’s to the South Beach scene. Meat Market was created as a modern take on the classic American steakhouse, now raved about from San Juan, Puerto Rico to Miami and Palm Beach, Florida. Keep on reading to find out who Chef Brasel refers to as “Beethoven in the Kitchen”, what culinary trips he is planning next, as well as what to look forward to at Meat Market during the Palm Beach Food & Wine Festival MIAMI TAKEOVER.

Altima: What dishes should guests look out for this season?
Chef Sean Brasel: Developing a new Dover Sole and adding a rotating Mixed Grill featuring exotic cuts of meat, working on some fresh salads featuring local farms.

Altima: Who do you look up to in your industry? Why?
Chef Sean Brasel: There are so many talented chefs and restaurateurs out there, I really can’t name just one, but if I was too I am in awe of the mastermind Grant Achatz. He is like Beethoven in the kitchen.

Altima: We read your bio on the Meat Market website where it states, “Brasel and Tornek focused much of their attention on bringing the American steakhouse into the 21st century with Meat Market.” What need did you see in the American steakhouse that you wanted to change?
Chef Sean Brasel: There isn’t anything specific we wanted to change, we just thought doing it our way is a little more different than the old connotation of the dark wood classic cigar smoking steakhouse.

Altima: When did you know you wanted to be a chef?
Chef Sean Brasel:
I loved cooking ever since I was young; I just didn’t realize it could be a reality until I was 19.

Altima: How do you get your inspiration?
Chef Sean Brasel: Inspiration comes from many different sources, sometimes just touring a farm and tasting a delicious fresh mango or strawberry can give you inspiration. As a chef, I am an avid reader and always looking to learn new techniques and patterns in cooking. That also gives inspiration when you read a cool idea and you say to yourself, “Wow, I never thought of combining those flavors.”

Altima: Favorite kitchen equipment or gadget?
Chef Sean Brasel: I am falling back to basics and am really in love with my mortar pesto. It’s a way of crushing for flavor without the electronic things that we have come to depend on. It really makes you think about the outcome of the product thru process.

Altima: Best cooking tip for a novice in the kitchen (Especially for the holidays…)
Chef Sean Brasel:
Plan your menu! Planning is execution and without proper planning, you can overcook things or have items not made correctly as your rushed to finish them.

Altima: What do you consider your proudest moment in life?
Chef Sean Brasel: Very tough question. I once catered a Super Bowl event for 3500 people at Miami Bayside. Most of the staff were culinary students. It was nothing but work for 2 weeks straight, and lots of organizing but once that event was running perfectly, it felt so amazing.

Altima: Where do you enjoy spending your weekends?
Chef Sean Brasel: I enjoy working on Saturday nights, and sleeping in on Sunday and going to brunch.

Altima: Top 3 Happy Hours in and around Palm Beach?
Chef Sean Brasel: I don’t know. With the exception of Meat Market. I don’t get the chance to explore different Happy Hours as much as I’d like.

Altima: Next vacation?
Chef Sean Brasel: I am going to Japan and Guam in November cooking some fabulous Certified Angus Beef Steaks for a few select dinners.

Altima: Any pets?
Chef Sean Brasel: Not right now. I do miss my old dog.

Altima: What do you normally wear outside of the kitchen?
Chef Sean Brasel: If I am not in my gym workout clothes, then I am in jeans and a t-shirt

Altima: Biggest pet peeve?
Chef Sean Brasel: I have a big pet peeve with my cooks who tell me the easy answer versus telling me the truth like, “Chef I burnt this product.” Instead blaming everyone else who supposedly turned up the oven or the flame.

Altima: What are some of the highlights we can look forward to at Meat Market’s MIAMI TAKEOVER during the annual Palm Beach Food and Wine Festival?
Chef Sean Brasel: Miami Takeover in Palm Beach will have some amazing chefs in Miami working together. We are working on creating something different to bring to Palm Beach by featuring our own take on what Miami cuisine is and how we can use one specific local product to showcase our individual culinary twist of Miami flavors. The lineup features some of the best culinary talent in Miami right now and I’m excited to get cooking with them!

Knife Fight, Equire Network feat. Meat Market’s Chef Sean Brasel
NOVEMBER 17TH | 9 PM EST

Looking for tickets to the Knife Fight? Our club members are invited to cheer on Chef Brasel as he competes for the title of ‘Culinary Master of the Universe’. The screening will allow guests to watch the show a week before airdate. Meat Market will provide Happy Hour pricing for bar guests and complimentary bites that Chef Brasel created while on the show (These dishes have never before been seen on the menu!)
RSVP HERE

 

 

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Join Author Annie Falk with a Seat at the ‘Swank Table’

Swank Farm Dinner

Swank Farm Owners, Darrin and Jodi Swank

The Farm-to-Table buzz has not only been a movement encouraging a healthier and cleaner form of consumption, but marketed in such a way that will make you want to eat up every bit of the dining experience. Annie Falk, entertaining doyenne and author, has teamed up with Swank Specialty Produce for their annual “Swank Table” al fresco dinner series hosted right in the middle of their fresh field of greens sourced by top restaurants in all of Florida!

Joining Falk on December 6th will be the “Best Of” Florida’s farmers, ranchers, artisanal producers, micro-brewers, distillers and organic wine makers, who have curated a multi-course meal inspired by Hamptons Entertaining, Falk’s newest book. A $350 ticket will get you a seat at the Swank Table, a signed copy of Falk’s  book Palm Beach Entertaining, preferred VIP seating, and a professional photo of you and your guests with the author Annie Falk. A portion of the proceeds from ticket sales will benefit Children’s Home Society of Florida.

BYOL- Don’t forget to Bring Your Own Lantern for your table and add your own little flare to this rustic retreat. Join your hosts as they illuminate the barn at sunset!

SAVE THE DATE (And your appetite!): Sunday, December 6th | 4:00 to 6:00 PM 


PURCHASE TICKETS HERE!

If you can’t wait until December (like us), you can purchase Annie’s newest book, Hamptons Entertaining on Amazon and brush up on your host(ess) skills in the meantime!

SWANK FARMS SIZZLE REEL from grapeseeker on Vimeo.

 

By Eileen Louissaint, Altima Contributing Writer

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$74 Million Dollar Cake… This one is hard to top!

I recently came across an article which blew my mind… Someone spent $74 million dollars on his daughter’s engagement party cake… British dress designer turned cake-maker, Debbie Wingham stumbled across the opportunity when a client picking up a dress order stumbled across her ‘hobby’.   The 6 foot long cake which replicated a detailed cat walk, with edible models, designer accessories and photographer, included a 5.2 carat pink diamond, a 6.4 carat yellow diamond and a total of 15 individual 5 carat white diamonds.  Took over 1000 hours to make and weighed over 900 lbs. Now that’s a cake that’s hard to top!

To view entire cake click on one of the links below

Read more about who was behind the cake at Daily Mail or view on Good Morning America or Komonews

 

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Meat Market Signature Steak Sundays ending soon

Meat lovers have until the last Sunday of September to enjoy half price off Meat Market’s  succulent signature steaks.  Known for its prime-grade cuts of beef, and Chef Sean Brasel’s exquisite touches, the swank Palm Beach steakhouse has enjoyed huge success this summer, quickly becoming a local favorite.   Though extended happy hours, Wall Street Wednesdays, backgammon nights, and late night Thursdays with DJ  Ilya Tatarov will continue during the season, if you want to get your ‘steak fix’, get twice as much for your money before its too late!  Last Sunday is September 27th!

To reserve:  Call Meat Market at 561 354 9800  or Email Andy

Click Here to view more Meat Market Happy Hour, Tastings and Dinner pictures

 

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A taste of Spain now at Benny’s on the Beach

I consider myself a sophisticated diner, who thrives on the whole experience— the ambiance, the quality of food, the service… so I was thrilled when I followed Chef Jeremy Hanlon to Benny’s on the Beach.

For weeks I’ve enjoyed brunches which led to lunches as we began with their in-house mixologist’s signature Bloody Marys and/or Bloody Marias (tequila based ) and eventually led to chilled bottles of Côtes de Provence rosé wine presented at our table. I wont share the brunch and lunch menu at this time, as most of you know about it… What you probably haven’t heard is Chef Jeremy is sharing his international experiences and inspirations at Benny’s with signature Paella Dinners on Saturday and Sunday.  Before the paella, you can choose from a (pintxos) menu, just as you would in Spain…except, unlike Spain, you can request preferences and omissions for your paella. 

The best of three worlds:  The setting which can’t be beat, the menu and the chef tailoring to your needs.. now that’s what I call a  ‘pieds dans l’eau’ ‘TRUE EXPERIENCE’.

Click here to read more as per the Palm Beach Post or Click here to make a reservation

 


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Black River Caviar Summer Highlights

The third week in June in Aspen  is a destination for  ‘sophisticated foodies’!  This year Black River Caviar participated in both the Aspen food and Wine and the Cochon 555 Heritage Fire.  A Russian Oscietra was flown in from Uruguay.   “We partnered with Krug Champagne and had the opportunity to introduce our product to new clients.   A highlight of our weekend was the Cochon Heritage Fire where we flew in a Russian Oscietra and offered our clients very fresh eggs! “, said Graham Gaspard President of Black River Caviar.

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To become a Preferred Private Client, email maribel@altimapalmbeach.com

to keep up to date, visit Black River Caviar

To view more pictures including Relais Chateau at Pebble Beach, click here

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Meat Market Palm Beach- The New Local Oasis

Thank You Meat Market for not forgetting us locals!  Keep on coming up with cool events.  I love your steaks, but the Happy Hours have changed the Palm Beach Summer Scene!!

Love the Backgammon Tuesdays, the Wall Street Wednesdays, Signature Steak Sundays with half-priced steaks, and of course always look forward for the late night happy hour on Thursday….

Your Summer Series cocktail and wine pairings are the bomb! I missed the Champagne dinner, but the Duckhorn Wine tasting was fabulous.   Looking forward to the Far Niente Winery dinner on Tuesday August 25th!

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Call Meat Market at 561 354 9800 to reserve your spot for Tuesday, July 14th!

or Email Andy

Click Here to view more Meat Market Happy Hour, Tastings and Dinner pictures

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Chef Jeremy Hanlon brings the South of France to the Palm Beaches

I had been there once– many years ago, and loved the ocean setting… then I went there two weeks ago and have returned 5 times since! I feel I discovered the best kept secret, only I fear the secret is now out!!!

The freshness of the food and the exquisite prepartion by Internationally acclaimed American Celebrity Chef Jeremy Hanlon, formerly of New York’s Restaurant Daniel (as in Boulud) is what makes this charming oceanfront destination a formidable dining experience! “Where else can you invite a large group of friends for fine dining outdoors in the summer months, directly on the ocean, not feel the heat and not make a huge dent
in your wallet? I’ve lived here for over 25 years, and it’s either a private stuffy club or a touristy hotel.”

My favorites? The whole Maine Lobster with a side of baked scallops over avocado and tomato coulis I had last Friday night accompanied by a bottle of a fabulous Rosé reminded me of my favorite spot in St. Barts. Jeremy’s signature Quinoa Chicken Salad and Chicken Tacos I had for lunch last week and the Lobster Eggs Benedict I had the week before for brunch were over the top!

I’ll talk about the cocktails in a future blog, as that’s a whole other story worth elaboration!

 

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View menu and hours, and make your reservations on line at
Benny’s on the Beach

or call 561 582 9001

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Black River Caviar celebrates Ceelo Green’s 30th Birthday

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Black River Caviar was invited to partake in Ceelo Green’s 30th Birthday Bash in Atlanta, and I was lucky enough to be part of the festivities as Brand Ambassador.  Needless to say the Russian oscietra was a big hit at the star-studded event!  Renowned Chef Jaime Doliveira used one of his signature recipes for the presentation—purple roasted potatoes, a dollop of vodka infused creme fraiche, a generous  serving of Russian Oscietra, topped with a garnish of chopped chives.

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Below- Dr. J’s wife Dorys Madden Erving watching son Jules loving the caviar

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Met wonderful people, favorite time was spent at Julius Erving’s home where his gorgeous and gracious wife, Dorys welcomed us as if we had been long time friends!

Looking forward to the next time, Atlanta!!

 

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New Black River Caviar Harvest is in! These Shades of Grey just get better…

Black River Caviar 2015 Harvest is finally here, and Altima subscribers have first pickings! After delays in harvest caused by warmer than normal weather and flight cancellations due to an angry volcano in Chile we have received our first harvest of the 2015 season this week (May 18th)

“I have to say it was worth the wait. I’ve received all four grades of Oscietra and Siberian— and all are spectacular in their own way,” says Graham Gaspard, President of Black River Caviar.

Due to the issues the farm has had getting the harvest under way and the flight delays, supply is tight so anyone wanting a taste  needs to jump while the product is available.

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The Golden– Maribel’s favorite!

“As this years harvest will be a shorter production due to warm weather delaying the start but the quality is better due the fish have had a longer maturation period. I’ve got limited supply for a few months so don’t let your people wait! All grades are available and it’s super fresh!” says Gaspard.

Altima subscribers can log in to www.blackrivercaviar.com and check out with promo code altima to receive a preferred price. or they can call Graham at 970 547 1542 for personal assistance. Or call 561 833 8283 (Altima) if they need further assistance.