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The Summit's Blog

chronicles of starting an art bar / cafe in san francisco

Tag Archives: tasting

I learned about The Summit after returning home to the Bay with plans to attend culinary school (and, of course, without an ounce of experience in the food business). A few conversations later with culinary school graduates, I started to question whether I was ready to consummate my relationship with cooking and agree to this long-term commitment—a fairly costly one, too. Where in the culinary world did I fit? Was I getting hot and bothered about the idea because I was that average Jane who strapped herself to the Food Network channel and had wet dreams about creating dishes that earned visits from Anthony Bourdain?

Timing is everything. After I failed to answer all of the above questions, I was introduced to Desi and Eddie, two guys who worked in the restaurant industry for years and came together so that before this summer’s end, the City will find out that a well-designed space complemented with a menu boasting rich flavors can frenzy a palate into ecstasy.

My first meeting with Eddie involved a trip to the San Francisco Ferry Plaza Farmers Market in preparation for a few upcoming tastings. I joined him in the kitchen as he prepared dishes that are likely appearing on the menu.

pulled pork + wild greens + fresh loaf = heaven

I felt like a pretty lucky intern; the tasting included a medley of roasted baby potatoes and wild mushrooms in vadouvan, followed by a pulled pork sandwich with wild greens.

call me crazy, but the butter bolete might be my all-time favorite mushroom

it would be an injustice if this dish didn't make a cameo

I’ve had a chance to witness a side of cafe-opening I never imagined. As the launch nears, there’s new meaning to the term crunch time; there are still plenty of contracts to sign, applications to submit and permits to request. That’s just one layer to the complexities of the project. To simply say the process requires hard work is an understatement. And now I find myself  hot and bothered about the collaboration and chaos that goes into a highly anticipated kick-off.

— Miss U

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it’s crunch time! construction is underway, permits are in play, help wanted ads are on their way… things to do, things to-do. i’m gitty and nervous at the same time. alot can still go wrong–like more construction going over budget, furniture not arriving on time, or worse inspectors being dicks. at this juncture i’m at the mercy of variables out of my control.

but when i take a step back, take a deep, breath, it’s really not that bad. between the stress of meetings and timelines i get to enjoy tasting like this with our first incubated chef:

jared formerly of orson / citizen cake looks on as we slice into his sample brioche loaf

and after tastings i get to spend time with creatives on the branding like this:

freddy anzures giving us a sneak peak of The Summit's brand identity

or spending time with the incubated start-ups:

the first gathering of i/o venture partners, incubated start-ups, and their tech mentors

but for the next 3o days my attention will be focused on the builders and designers of the summit space:

kanbayashi design + travis construction = the build-out of the summit

10 months of planning and day dreaming are coming to culmination. inside i’m dreading the long hours it’ll take to see this thru. gone are my weekend jaunts across SF’s myriad of night clubs. gone are the 11a-6p days of leisure.  the little voice in my head tells me “i should be careful what i wish for” because dreams do become realities…

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the sfweekly broke this week that timbo is consulting on a new project called the attic. i’ve been asked a million times if tim was gonna be the exec chef at the summit or if i’ll be carrying on the tradition of pushing Filipino food to new heights. my answer has been, “no comment.” one prominent blogger actually asked me if there was a falling out between us! au contraire mon frére…

for the past few months tim and I have met constantly about the summit, but unfortunately timing has prevented us from collaborating once more. as a trusted confidant and homie for life, i had tim sit in on the first tasting of the menu and he gave me the following feedback:

kiss my grits: the hands down favorite of the tasting. 4505 chicken apple sausage and ramp onion grits. bomb!

 

“i really honestly liked the food that [he] put out and i could see that style of food working well with that community… i knw you originally have had other thoughts about the direction of where you imagined some of the dishes etc… but based on what we tasted and what i know about him as a person and [as a] cook, he will thrive the most and the best if he is given more freedom/creative control. his strength and passion definitely lies within that style of cooking… he’s a bostonian by heart! i don’t know what that means but it seems to translate into his personality on the plate.”

tim speaks the truth, the exec chef of the summit has a strong personal style and passion that exudes on the plate, but i’m at a lost on  how to describe his food in a way that doesn’t get stuck in the drone of “sustainable, organic, seasonal Californian cuisine.” his food is much more sexy and primal than that. until i can pin-point, i’ll have to keep his identity under wraps.

tim luym and the mysterious new exec chef of the summit mind melding over cook books.

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