Tween Approved – Dining with “The Write to Cook”
By Brigitta Wohlmuth
This month, instead of doing one of our typical restaurant reviews we thought it would be fun to switch things up a bit. We were recently alerted of some very talented students at Somersfield Academy who have their own cooking blog. These group of tweens have a serious passion for good eatin’, so we thought that they would be a perfect bunch to bring along on our next culinary escapades.
We set out to visit two of Hamilton’s most popular restaurants, both of which have had some interesting menu changes recently. First on our mission we head to the famous Pickled Onion, undoubtedly one of Front Street’s busiest restaurants.
“The guys I work with have so much experience, I’m talking thirty, forty years in the restaurant business,” says the newest addition to the team, Chef Andre. He came to Bermuda in July, with a wealth of knowledge from Miami. Still he feels humbled to be working in Bermuda at such an iconic establishment. “One night I asked my sous chef Mario to make me something that’s not on the menu and he made me this Kung Pao Chicken. I tried it and it was amazing,” he tells us, that’s how the dish ended up on the new menu which they just changed in February. Tender flash seared morsels of sweet and sour chicken on a bed of crispy Cantonese noodles, all mixed up with juicy pieces of sweet red pepper, creamy cashew nuts and toasted sesame seeds- Andre was being modest, the dish was absolutely out of this world! The students loved it too, they loved everything as a matter of fact. We were quite impressed that they even knew what truffles were, let alone that they would enjoy a flatbread covered in rich, homemade truffle puree…. now I’d say that is an acquired taste but I guess if it looks like pizza you can’t really go wrong.
The next day we went to Victoria Grill where we met Chef Vlatko who has been working at the restaurant for two and a half years. “The menu focus right now is simple, fresh and clean” he tells us how they haven been working together with local farmers to plate as many organic ingredients as possible. The students got to enjoy a deliciously healthy meal that they hardly noticed was without any meat. “We have been trying to give more options for vegans and vegetarians as well,” says Chef Vlatko. The Portabello Tostado is one of their popular vegetarian sellers, filled with refried beans, juicy mushrooms, apple-cabbage slaw, corn salsa and topped with a creamy tofu sauce.
The students truly embarked on a culinary adventure with Victoria Grill taking their taste buds on a tour of flavours from around the world. From the Middle East to South America, they sampled two of their most popular appetisers: the famous house-made Guacamole (made table side to your liking), and an exotic Mezza Platter featuring authentic baba ganoush, hummus and tabouleh, all made in house. The students loved it all, even the pickled cauliflower, and they can’t wait to bring their parents back again for more. Which just goes to prove that young people today are a lot more adventurous than we give them credit for, so the next time you take your kids out to dinner why not try somewhere new?
Visit www.writetocook.com for tasty tips, recipes and reviews.