Friday, January 24, 2014

Dinner with Pop Up Akron

Akron Empire is so excited to welcome back guest blogger Erica Scheutzow who wrote about The White Rabbit last year. When she is not sharing her epic dining experiences, she also runs a small business called As I Breathe I Hope, where she handmakes quirky original plush characters made from new and recycled fabrics. Check out AIBIH on Etsy and on Facebook or go check her out in person at Zephyr Mart in Kent Saturday February 8th!

Dinner Has Popped Up!
by Erica Scheutzow
Executive Chef Matthew Waddell of Rosemont Country Club, Chef/Consultant Jeffrey Winer.
Last week, my husband and I had the pleasure of good company at the first “Pop-Up Akron” dinner at the Eye Opener on West Market Street. Owners Liz and Steve Arn welcomed Chefs Jeffrey Winer, Matthew Waddell and Britt-Marie Culey with open arms for this special endeavor. With the popularity of pop up dinners out west, Chef Winer wanted to embark on this concept in Akron and highlight the talents of our local chefs and artisan food makers by hosting a different dinner each month. Two such artisans featured include Yellow House Cheese and Crooked River Coffee Company which were both incorporated into our food fare this evening.
Amuse-Bouche: peppadew peppers stuffed with wild rice, sour cherry and honey goat cheese

Steak Tartare by Chef Winer: traditional French preparation served with a quail egg and parmesan toast points

With an intimate seating of 31 guests we sipped our wine and adventurously feasted on a 6 course meal which included Amuse-Bouche, Steak Tartare, Lobster Bisque, Belgian Salad, Grilled Lamb Chop and Chocolate Decadence. Not only did these dishes look and smell delightful but we experienced a range of flavors and textures, each dish unique and complimenting the next. As we enjoy our dishes, both Chefs Winer and Waddell throughout the evening personally visited each table to talk with the patrons, asking and answering any questions. They really went above and beyond reaching out to us; reaffirming how passionate they are about what they do and how much they care about their guests. As I looked at every table, each person had a smile on their face followed by laughter, a sign that what was happening tonight was the starting note of what is to come. Without a doubt, this is one of the best experiences I’ve had in regards to local fair thanks to Chefs Winer, Waddell and Culey.

Lobster Bisque by Chef Waddell: velvety bisque with delicately poached lobster, a hint of sherry and topped with a crab crouton

Belgian Salad by Chef Winer: Belgian endive, shaved fennel, pear, yellow house blue cheese, candied pecans with a pear honey vinaigrette

Grilled Lamb Chop by Chef Waddell: sea salt, fresh herbs and a mustard-tellicherry sauce

The next Pop-Up Akron dinner will be held on February 22nd at The Eye Opener. For more information about Pop-Up Akron, please visit their Facebook page and “like” them to stay up to date on future dinner dates, menu, locations and featured chefs.

Don't forget dessert! Chocolate Decadence by Chef Culey: rich chocolate cake, almond paste, chocolate ganache with truffle honey ice cream

Pop-Up Akron:
Chef/Consultant Jeffrey Winer:

Executive Chef Matthew Waddell:
Rosemont Country Club of Fairlawn

Executive Pastry Chef Britt-Marie Culey:
Coquette Patisserie

A special thanks to:

Liz & Steve Arn of The Eye Opener

Kevin & Kristyn Henslee of Yellow House Cheese

Howard Sobel of Crooked River Coffee

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