Texans were cooking and providing the wine at the Beard House last night, where I sat with freelance food writer Nancy Davidson, who gave me her opinion of the best cheese plate in New York (the way to Nancy’s heart, apparently, is cheese).
Across the table from us were the closest thing to nobility in the food writing world, Michael and Ariane Batterberry, who founded Food & Wine and Food Arts magazines.
Michael Batterberry wears seersucker better than anyone I know, although he wasn’t wearing it last night as it is only March. He told amusing anecdotes and defended Savannah's honor when it was compared unfavorably to Charleston.
In charge of this evening’s "Texas Modern Dinner” were Mark Schmidt and Bryce Gilmore of Café 909 in Marble Falls, Jason Gould of Gravitas in Houston and Monica Rios-Carter, the pastry chef of Abacus in Dallas.
Here's what they made and poured:
Oysters on the half shell with prickly pear-Serrano mignonette, by Mark Schmidt
Texas goat cheese and braised onions on beet tuile with wild honey, by Jason Gould
Gruet non-vintage Blanc de Noirs (Albuquerque, which of course is not in Texas, but it’s nearby)
White Gulf shrimp with candied and spiced citrus salad by Jason Gould
Inwood Estates Vineyards 2005 Palomino-Chardonnay (Hunt County, Texas
Seared dayboat scallops with Real Ale-braised rabbit and green apple-spring onion soubise by Mark Schmidt
Dickson 2005 La Rosa (Texas Hill Country)
Diamond H Ranch quail with spinach, black olives and white bean hash by Jason Gould
Inwood Estates Vineyards 2003 Tempranillo-Cabernet
Ruby’s BBQ smoked shoulder of wild boar crépinette with sweet potato grits, baby turnips, carrots and spiced pecans by Mark Schmidt
Dickson La Cruz de Comal 2004 Cohete Rojo
Cheese and dessert by Monica Rios-Carter:
Texas goat cheese and duck prosciutto terrine, Shaft’s Blue Cheese-bacon tart and Cooper's Cave Ale-cheese soup
Jumilla Altico 2003 Syrah (Spain)
Texas pecan pie on chocolate cake with Jim Beam ice cream and white peach and caramel sauces
Flat Creek Estate 2006 Muscato Blanco
and Flat Creek Estate Port (Texas Hill Country