Line cooks are the unsung heroes of a restaurant kitchen. They’re the crew that plates your tartare and cleans out the deep fryer each night time. The crew that stays late so you possibly can order half the menu 5 minutes earlier than closing—after which organizes, sanitizes, and prepares each inch of a restaurant earlier than it opens the following day. These often-overlooked culinary professionals will quickly play a starring function, although, in a collection of Monday night time dinners beginning September 11 referred to as The Lineup.
The collection, which returns for 3 nights this month and options cooks from NYC eating places Bonnie’s, Rolo’s and The 4 Horsemen, is the brainchild of chef and At the moment Present Culinary Contributor Elena Besser. She got here up with the idea after working for a 12 months and a half on the opening crew of Missy Robbins’ famed restaurant, Lilia, in Williamsburg, Brooklyn.
That have impressed Elena to place collectively a crew that celebrates the behind-the-scenes work that line cooks do by bringing them entrance and middle for diners.
“This can be a platform to achieve expertise and the boldness to probably take the following step of their careers, or simply really feel reinvigorated by the restaurant trade basically,” mentioned Elena. It’s additionally an opportunity for head cooks—who might be in attendance—to indicate help for his or her employees.
“Nice folks will gravitate towards supportive work environments,” Elena mentioned. “It may even encourage the taking part cooks to remain at their restaurant even longer due to their love for the chef and the work tradition the restaurant gives.”
The Lineup offers every prepare dinner the chance to run their very own restaurant for the night time, beginning with concepting and curating the menu. The cooks then work with the Lineup crew to carry their imaginative and prescient to life by means of desk settings, beverage curation, music, hiring kitchen and back-of-house employees—and offering constructive suggestions. Stated Elena: “They workshop their meals…to make it as nice as it could actually probably be and execute it efficiently for service.”
Every dinner is held on a Monday night time, historically the designated time without work for a lot of restaurant professionals, with two seatings (at 5:30 pm and eight:30 pm, respectively) at Hudson Desk in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. Tickets are $195 and embrace a gap chunk and welcome cocktail, adopted by a curated, five-course menu and wine pairing. (Professional tip: On the time of writing, you may discover essentially the most availability for the 5:30 seating on September 11 with Angness Kim of the well-liked Cantonese-American restaurant, Bonnie’s, and the September 25 dinner with Jonathan Vogt of the Michelin-starred and James Beard Award-winning restaurant, The 4 Horsemen).
September eleventh: Agness Kim, Sous Chef, Bonnie’s
From The Lineup: “Chef Agness grew up in Flushing, Queens right here in New York, and her delicacies is closely influenced by the healthful meals her mom cooked for her as a baby. Her menu is whimsical and nostalgic, and pays tribute to each her Korean heritage and American upbringing. Agness has beforehand labored at Zahav in Philadelphia, Upland, Misi, and Win Son.”
September 18th: Nadine Ghantous, Sous Chef, Rolo’s
From The Lineup: “Born and raised in a small city outdoors of Philadelphia, Nadine’s menu is closely impressed by her Lebanese background and household who instilled in her a deep ardour for meals. Served family-style, Nadine’s menu will mix each her heritage and up to date culinary background. Nadine has beforehand labored at Lilia.”
September twenty fifth: Jonathan Vogt, Line Prepare dinner, The 4 Horsemen
From The Lineup: “Chef Jonathan grew up in Virginia Seaside, working in native eating places there earlier than transferring to New York for culinary college. His strategy to meals goals to show that the very best eating experiences make the most of masterful methods to let easy elements shine. Chef Jonathan’s menu celebrates his philosophy that the only meals, fantastically ready, is what makes true effective eating. Jonathan has beforehand labored at Loring Place and Don Angie.”
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