Tuesday, October 16, 2012

The best in a chef?

What I have here is a story that every chef should read and understand and agree to.  Two weeks ago, on October 4th, I was asked to a private tasting of the food for the Capitalist Pig, which was a BBQ take-out restaurant located in the Mad Art Gallery.  The grand opening was supposed to be on the 10th of this month also and foodies and writers and bloggers were given early access to taste what Ron Buechele had in mind.  Now, I went with my wife, dressed up nicely, had beer, talked to some people and the went up for what looked like an all-you-can-eat BBQ buffet.

There was all sorts of creations and while my first instinct here is to show you picture after picture of what each item was and how it tasted let me stop you right there:  I will not.

What happened that night was something so magical and so incredible and so "unlike St. Louis" that it makes me thrilled just thinking about it.  That event, this singularity of awesomeness gives me hope that there is something or can be something great in St. Louis that will draw people from around the world.  What this event was, was the head chef and owner, Ron , discovering that the food was coming out as good as he thought it would be.  That's correct, you read it right.  The food was not as good as we, the people and even the chef thought it would be.  So, while I wouldn't mind telling you that the sauces were good, or the smoked pork belly was like heaven, I don't want to get into how the chicken was flavorless and had a rubbery skin on it, because it will most likely be fixed.  There is no reason to get into any of the issues and problems I had with the tasting, because Ron already knew it.  What was so magnificent was that a chef or restaurant owner decided to put off the opening of his restaurant to fix everything.


It may not sound like anything important to you, but there are so many restaurants in St. Louis that suck.  They are really awful and I wouldn't eat at them if you paid me to do so.  But, those restaurants, like many of those shown on shows like Restaurant Impossible, are filled with staff who believe that their food is the best and flawless.  They are so blinded by the truth for one reason or another that they do not wish to change, much less take any comments or critisezm.  What you have is a chef or owner volunteering to not open his restaurant at the specified time and date and instead make sure everything is perfect.  I was so worried because so many people have their heart in the right place and want to bring business to St. Louis and want to open up restaurants.  But, their food or service sucks.  Then they close down in a matter of years and act like it is a bigger mystery than Atlantis as  to why no one would come to their place.  It take a real chef, much less a real St. Louis citizen, to see that it is better to not open on time and do it right than to open early and ruin it.  

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