Tess on the Town: Nov. 11

The menu at a good restaurant is an ever-evolving ode to endless possibilities.

Here are a few of the evolutions in the Grand Valley restaurant scene.

BETWEEN BREAKFAST AND LUNCH: The Wild Flour Café, 2148 Broadway, is offering a Sunday brunch menu. Chef and owner Kathryn Luther noticed that Monday was her slow day. So, at the urging of some customers, she decided about six weeks ago to close on Mondays and open on Sundays for brunch. The new schedule change is going very well, she said.

The most popular item, so far, is the ham and asparagus strata. Other dishes are a breakfast burrito with bacon and green chile; blueberry pancakes with fresh whipped cream and fruit; quiche; and stuffed French toast.

The Wild Flour Café has been open on the Redlands for nearly two years. The chef serves Sunday brunch from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m.

FRENCH FOR RED: Chef and new owner of Le Rouge, Patrice Petit, is planning to put his own mark on the downtown French bistro, but he’s being a bit coy about the exact recipes he plans to introduce.

He is in the process of perfecting the menu and asked, “Can you wait a bit?” when I pestered him.

Petit, Parisian by birth, has lived and worked in the United States for nearly 30 years. He owned the popular Bistro Basalt before becoming general manager at Le Rouge.

Petit described the new cuisine as French-American modern bistro with Mediterranean, European and Thai influences.

Chef Petit, I hope we will see some mussels in the lineup.

Le Rouge is at 317 Main St., 257-1777.

IN PALISADE: From chef Meg Albers of Inari’s, I share with you some creations on the autumn menu. The emphasis is on seasonal and local.

To warm the belly, Inari’s is serving grilled bratwurst, weisswurst and ancho-rubbed New York strip steak.

From the breadbasket that is Colorado, they incorporate Italian plums, butternut squash, pears and apples, all from Palisade, and Colorado-raised Red Bird chicken, Rosen lamb and sterling silver beef.

Just a few of the temptations:

Colorado grilled lamb burger, served on toasted pita with tomato, Bermuda onions, tzaziki sauce and French fries.

Bavarian sausages, grilled with carmelized onions, Palisade apples, sauerkraut, Dijon mustard and roasted potatoes.

Risotto with leeks, roasted corn, butternut squash, thyme and Manchego cheese.

Don’t forget, Wednesday is date night at Inari’s, with a three-course prix fixe for two for $35.

Inari’s is at 336 Main St., in Palisade, 464-4911.

WANNA BET? At his last New Year’s Eve party, California restaurateur Ted Balestreri made a bet with Pentagon chief Leon Panetta, his pal of 30 years.

“If Leon catches Osama bin Laden,” Balestreri said, he’d uncork a rare $10,000 bottle of wine to share in celebration, according to The Associated Press.

Well, Balestreri is paying up. Bin Laden was killed in a May raid in Pakistan, and the bettor will uncork the 1870 Chateau Lafite Rothschild in Panetta’s honor this New Year’s Eve.

THERE’S AN APP FOR THAT: Software for cooks has come into its own with computer tablet technology. The innovations have several advantages over traditional cookbooks.

First, you can take your iPad with you from the grocery store (you’ll have an exact list of ingredients for the recipe) to home, and into the kitchen.

Second, cookbooks are two-dimensional with, maybe, one picture. Good software programs have multiple photos, infographics, built-in timers, imbedded links and voice prompts.

New York Times writer Julia Moskin recommends these apps: “Baking with Dorie (Greenspan),” “Jamie Oliver’s 20-Minute Meals,” “Mark Bittman’s How to Cook Everything” and “Professional Chef” by the Culinary Institute of America.

QUOTE: “It would be nice if the Food and Drug Administration stopped issuing warnings about toxic substances and just give me the names of one or two things still safe to eat.” — Robert Fuoss

Send tips and ideas to Tess.Furey@gj sentinel.com.


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