Chef/restaurateur Lesley Harb introduced her new dining concept, Plated Modern Kitchen, to guests at the Grand Tasting in January (patrons had already known and loved her Fast N Fresh eatery). Harb’s Plated dish for the Forks & Corks event: Marinated Grilled Chicken with Mediterranean Salsa Fresca and Greek Farro Salad. Insider Perspective: The refreshing farro salad (with chick peas, onions, and bits of crunchy red and green veggies) flavorfully popped alongside the salsa’s vibrant tomatoes—crisp and colorful.
Plated Modern Kitchen's Forks & Corks Top 5 List:
Q: What are a couple of tips for prepping for the Grand Tasting?
A: Plan, plan and plan. We start about two weeks prior to the event, calculating the number of portions and all of the components that comprise the dishes. We coordinate with our food purveyors to bring in extra products and then start prepping about 48 hours in advance so everything is fresh.
Q: Do you have a wine pairing suggestion for the dish you served at the 2017 event?
A: Fortuitously, our booth this year was next to that of my favorite winery, Hook & Ladder. The dish paired beautifully with their 2014 Estate Chardonnay.
Q: What have you learned from past Grand Tastings?
A: We have participated in Forks & Corks for the last six years, so we have learned to prepare for the unexpected. I always have a “crash kit” with tape, scissors, clips, ponchos and snacks (that’s the mom in me). I always plan on a cool start with warmer weather in the afternoon. This year was a little cooler but, once the rain clouds cleared away, it was a spectacular day.
Q: What were some of the best compliments you received about the dish you served?
A: We received a lot of great feedback. With so many of the dishes at the Grand Tasting being a little heavier, we are a nice departure to the lighter side.
Q: What is your favorite thing about the Grand Tasting?
A: Having participated for so many years, I love reconnecting with the winemakers we have gotten to know. It is always great to be able to visit with our fellow Sarasota-Manatee Originals members and sample their delicious food.
Plated Modern Kitchen | 8105 Cooper Creek Boulevard | University Park | 941-315-4500 | platedmodernkitchen.com
Author: Abby Weingarten