Chef's Blog

Solage Calistoga's Executive Chef Brandon Sharp shares his passion for cooking, life and all things Napa Valley.

October 30, 2013

crab salad

dungeness crab salad with avocado green goddess, onion seed sprouts and red radish sprouts, and spiced leek griddle cakes.  Bracing temperature contrast on this one, and fine balance between the cool of the avocado and the warm south-Asian spices in the griddlecakes.

sm salmon


Smoked salmon (we cure the salmon with Black Seal rum, brown sugar, salt, and spices, then smoke it with hickory chips) with horseradish creme fraiche, sausalito springs watercress, dry-farmed marble potatoes, and osetra caviar.



Winter on the Amalfi Coast–lemon-steamed halibut with artichoke and black garlic ribollita (traditionally, day-old minestrone cooked down with chunks of stale bread), tomato-clam broth, and a fricassee of littleneck clams with preserved lemon, celery, and pickled red chard.


Another Italian inspiration, this one from the brain of sous chef Sam McKenzie:  seared diver scallops with navel orange puree, cannelini beans, nicoise olive salsa verde, and grilled chicory.  Paisano-level ingredients but in delicate balance, and a perfect foil for the scallops.



Pre-Thanksgiving chicken:  roasted with cornbread stuffing under the skin, with a block of crispy chicken confit, cranberry marmalade, creamed bloomsdale spinach, burnt orange jus.

strip steak


“completely nude” new york strip, carola potatoes, shortrib marmalade, rapini, sauce bordelaise.  The carola potatoes are cut to resemble marrow bones and cooked, then filled a la minute with hot shortrib marmalade and sprinkled with potato crumbs.



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