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Culinary Corner; Week of October 9, 2023

Hello! So I hate to start the week on a down note but you have probably all noticed staff wearing masks again. It's true that there is an upswing in Covid cases here and we are asking you all to please respect the safety of your neighbors by taking precautions. Remember that wearing masks is meant to protect others as much as ourselves, and while many of us aren't worried about the virus, I'm sure all of us would hate to be the reason someone or their family got sick. Please be courteous. We will of course keep you posted on events as they unfold.

At this time we are not closing dining rooms or cancelling events, and so I really hope to see you all at the Octoberfest event on Tuesday. There are two beers made especially for you-a Vanilla Honey Porter called "October Sky", and a Pale Ale called "Not So Pale Ale" the reason for which will be obvious when we pour it for you. In addition we will have Hot apple cider, Mulled wine, pork shanks, pretzels, sausages, music and fun. As of Friday afternoon, it looks like good weather, but of course this is Colorado and so if you know anyone with any authority over rain, help us keep it dry and sunny.

Thank you to those who were so understanding and courteous last week when we had to limit service. We simply don't have a lot of staff, and running the dining room effectively takes quite a few servers that were simply not here. The last thing any of us want is to limit service, we put a lot of pride and quite frankly hard work into our Food and Beverage program-only to have the experience lessened by circumstances we can't control. We are working hard on a more permanent solution to this recurring problem, the only comfort being that we are not alone in shortage of labor.

The Hive Market has been a success so far. We still have quite a ways to go in terms of operations, and details but I feel confident in expanding the hours a bit. beginning on Monday the Market will be open from 8-2, seven days a week. Currently there are five entrees and seven sides available along with multiple pastries, breads, etc. Working hard on getting some fresh beignets or doughnuts in there next week too, but I would expect them to go fast if we do. Many of you have asked us to put the menu out in advance, I am considering this but I really would prefer to keep the menu flexible. This week we are serving a mix of simple items like a tuna salad pita or a lobster roll, with more complex items like a Beef Bourgignion made with Zinfandel and Oxtails-it is simply awesome. Several of you have requested that we carry Milk, and so now I have whole milk and 2% as well in Pint sizes.

In the Dining room, The appetizer this week is Waldorf Salad. Now this one is popular, and has quite a history. It was originally created in 1896, and introduced at a charity event honoring St Mary's Children's hospital and coincided with the opening of the Waldorf Astoria hotel the very next day. The Waldorf Astoria was and remains a very important representative of American Cuisine for well over a century, so you want to make sure that you are doing justice to their salad. Now over the years, I have heard many opinions about the "Proper Way" to make this iconic salad, all from very talented chefs who claimed to have the "real recipe". In 2010 I was lucky enough to hear a lecture from the Chef at the hotel who was retiring after 30 years, and one of my colleagues asked him for the correct original recipe. "Mayonnaise, Apples, Celery" was the answer. Ok. So this is why I don't put much faith in "Classic" recipes, or the "Right" way to do things. I felt confident in changing it to suit more modern tastes and style. Ours has chopped apples, celery, walnuts, yogurt, honey, cinnamon and lemon.

The Soup this week is a Tomato soup with grilled vegetables, namely zucchini and squash. It's a simple soup, the grilled vegetables give it a kind of smoky flavor and the more vegetables you eat the more dessert you get at the end of the meal. It's true, just ask Anna.

The Cheese is called Fior Di Latte dei Monte, which is a mouthful. It's ok, if you like fresh Mozzarella this is not that different. Classically Mozzarella from Italy is made with the milk of Buffaloes, while the lesser known Fior is made from cow's milk. Of course in our modern world, these things sort of blend together and now there is little real difference. Suffice to say that this a real Italian Soft cheese, very similar to Fresh Mozzarella and we areserving it with Salami and bread.

At dinner, We have Coconut Crusted Jumbo Shrimp with Orange sauce, served with Sesame Aspargus and Soba Noodles.

We have Beef Sirloin Oscar-which means that it is topped with Crabmeat, this is served with wild mushrooms and corn whipped potatoes

We have Oaxacan Chicken Mole. Now Mole sauce is a very serious thing to consider. David makes this sauce and it takes him a couple of days to peel, seed and reconstitute chiles, dry fruits, toast nuts, before simmering it all together with this Mexican Chocolate that he buys when I am not looking. Altogether this is a roasted chicken brushed with a very complex , slightly spicy sauce served with roasted Plantains and Rice. Very very good. Try it with Riesling, definitely.

We have for our vegetarian friends, a Quinoa and roasted Mushroom Bowl, with Miso broth, arugula and topped with crispy onions.

We have Baked Ziti with Italian Sausage, plenty of marinara and garlic bread. Try it with Chianti.

For specials, check out the roast quail, The Creamy Mussel Stew, Pan Seared Swordfish, The Halibut and the Lamb Shanks.

Stay healthy everyone, I hope to see you next week and hopefully we can remove masks soon as well.

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