The Inn Crowd Cooking Show
Last August 2017, I had the privilege to be part of the Central Coast wine Event founded by Archie McLaren. This was the 32nd iteration of this event and I have been involved in one guise or another over the years. This is most likely the last year of this event and it was great to work with fellow long-time participants, Chefs Rick Manson and Frank Ostini. All our bios and the event details are below along with the menu and a few recipes. We have filmed this event for an episode of The Inn Crowd cooking show. I think it's a fun episode and gives a great perspective of chefs collaborating on a luncheon for some 300 guests. The menu is below and was designed to compliment a variety of wines that were being offered at the event. I prepared three of my favorite dishes, Caramelized Onion Tart, Farm Raised Abalone with Herb Butter and a Lemon Curd Cake with Berries. The event took place in a private jet hangar and we worked from a typical field kitchen just outside the back door.
View host Craig case and I on The Inn Crowd Saturdays at 6:30 with ABC affiliate KEY channel 3. Please note that the airtime may vary as late as 9:30 during the football season. You may view the show online at the Santa Barbara News Press. Look to the right side of the web page for a link to the show. YTS Digital Films filmed and directed this show.
Put on your apron, grab your whisk, fire up the oven and get on your apron. I'll provide the recipes, the rest is up to you. See you in the kitchen.
You may anticipate being in the immediate presence of such remarkable Kinetic Art Forms as Ferrari Enzo, 365GTB4 Daytona and 599GTB Automobiles, as well as a venerable Concours 356SC Porsche and a Bugatti 16.4 Veyron, a Rare Array of the World’s Most Exotic!
The Super Silent Auction will include many Large Format Etched and Hand-Painted Bottles from Magnums to Salmanazars representing the evolution of Unique Blends Created for the Wine Classic over the years. Auction luncheon prepared & presented by Wine Classic’s dynamic & creative family of chefs including Chef Rick Manson of Chef Rick’s, Ultimately Fine Foods, Chef Frank Ostini of the renowned Buellton Hitching Post, & Chef Michael Hutchings of Michael’s Catering in Santa Barbara.
The Annual Fund-A-Need Auction Lot will inure to the benefit of a Non-Profit whose Mission is the Healing Arts.
Caramelized Onion Tart
Grilled Corn Quesadilla
Red Pepper, Onion, Eggplant Crostini
Black Eye Pea Cakes
summer vegetable salad
Cultured Red Abalone, Chardonnay Butter
snipped dill, vine tomatoes
Oak Grilled Beef Tenderloin-Mushroom Sauce
Vegetable Sandwich with Goat Cheese
Lemon Curd Cake and Fresh Berries
Our dear long-time friend, Chef Michael Hutchings, has been an integral part of the Central Coast Wine Classic since 1992, coordinating and presenting the Vintage Dinner, as well as an integral part of the Dinner at Hearst Castle for well over ten years, always presenting the hors-d'oeuvres for the Champagne reception, sometimes a main course during the Dinner, and again this year an amazing array of superlative such creations for the Champagne Reception. His creations have always been uniformly appropriate and wonderful. We know that you will find them to be so.
Michael is a chef who has paid his dues. Like many other American chefs, he took a job in a restaurant to work his way through college. An accomplished flutist, he planned a musical career. But in the kitchen of Disneyland at the fabled private Club 33, he was taught by the Black Hat Master Chef Rudolph Stoy, and his priorities changed. Michael Hutchings eventually became executive chef of Club 33, then worked under several Los Angeles chefs including James Sly at La Serre (now the owner of Sly’s in Carpinteria), and Jean Grodin, executive chef of L’Orangerie, Los Angeles.
The chef/owner of L’Ermitage, Jean Bertranou, suggested Michael Hutchings go to London to work at Le Gavroche under the Roux Brothers, so in 1978, Michael Hutchings, along with his wife and eight-month-old child, and modest savings, went to London to work at Le Gavroche. The Roux brothers were so impressed with his seriousness and ability that after only a few months they promoted him to sous-chef and told him that when he was ready for a restaurant in the United States they would back him financially in a partnership. Three years later, following brief stages in the kitchens of Alain Chapel, the Troisgros brothers, and Gaston Lenotre, he was ready.
The result was Michael’s Waterside in Santa Barbara. During ten years of operation, Michael’s Waterside was recognized as a leader in contemporary California-French cuisine. After selling the Waterside in 1993, Chef Michael Hutchings hung his toque at the Santa Barbara Polo Club, NationsBank executive dining room, the Tower Club in Charlotte, Kaiser Grill, and St. James in Palm Springs. Now, Chef Michael oversees a food consulting and catering service business in Santa Barbara, California.
Some of the highlights of Michael’s career follow:
- Journeyman in Europe with Albert Roux of Le Gavroche Two Star Michelin
- Apprenticed in France with Gastone Lenotre, Alain Chapel, Troisgros, Two & Three Star Michelin
- Michael’s Waterside listings in Mobile Guide, AAA Guide, Zagat Guide, Gault Millaut Travel Holiday Award 1985 to 1992, award discontinued
- Distinguished Restaurant of North America Award 1993
- Press credits with Time Magazine, Gourmet Magazine, Bon Appétit, Chocolatiere and others
- Guest Chef at Beard House in New York 1986 and 1990
- Guest Chef at Ahwanee Hotel in Yosemite National Park
- Special Event Coordinator for KCBX public radio at Hearst Castle Historical Monument
- Chef Coordinator for Central Coast Wine Auction 1992-1997, dinner for 800 guests
- Guest Chef at “Merci Julia” event celebrating Julia’s 80 birthday in 1992
- Appeared on “Dinner at Julia’s” video magazine with Julia Child
- Charitable fundraising for Red Cross, United Way, Cancer Society, Juvenile Diabetics Cooking video on CNN, NBC, and in France, Germany, and Japan
- Julia Child’s 40th Anniversary of PBS Beef Bourguignonne event, 2003
- Continuing Guest Chef Central Coast Wine Classic Dinner at Hearst Castle
- Chef Host of The Inn Crowd Cooking Show
Thank you, Michael, for your continuing substantive role in our special Wine Classic culinary presentations. It is always a pleasure to have your good energy and expertise as part of our culinary proceedings and to celebrate our 31st Annual Wine Classic and the 25th Annual Dinner at Hearst Castle. All of Those Incredible Repasts to Which You Substantively Contributed Could Not Have Happened Without Your Focused and Gracious Extraordinary Culinary Expertise! Thank You, Michael!
22 West Mission Street Suite G
Santa Barbara, California, 93101
Chef Rick Manson
Chef Rick’s Ultimately Fine Foods
Santa Maria, California
The Up-Tempo American cooking prepared by one of California Central Coast’s premier chefs, Rick Manson, a long-time friend of the Wine Classic and the community of Avila Beach (At Archie McLaren’s behest, Rick was the Chef for the array of world-class percussionists who were a part of the transcendent Avila Drum Day Healing Percussion Festival in the 1990s!) is a blend of Georgia low country, southern Louisiana, Southwest, and Southern California influences, seasoned with a hint of rhythm and blues, a splash of color, and a touch of irreverence. We welcome Chef Rick again, as he has presented his wondrously flavorful culinary creations for our Auction Luncheon several times, including his remarkable luncheon in 2013.
Chef Rick began earning critical acclaim during his 10-year tenure as executive chef of the King & Prince Hotel on historic St. Simons Island, Georgia. Chef Rick’s Ultimately Fine Foods in Santa Maria, his highly popular restaurant that he closed this past year, consistently earned the “Best Restaurant in Santa Maria” award from the Santa Maria Sun. Central Coast Magazine says “ … thank goodness for something different and intriguing!” Jim Clendenen, of Au Bon Climat Winery in Santa Maria, has said of Rick: “Some people are born into the hospitality industry.”
Chef Rick’s demeanor, his receptiveness, and his smile define that. He is an excellent chef, the consummate host and he always delivers a lagniappe (Cajun for something extra special), which transforms your experience with him into something memorable.’’ Rick was named the 2007 Central Coast Wine Classic’s Culinary Honoree founder Archie McLaren. Selected for his “indefatigable support and enthusiasm in furthering culinary excellence on the Central Coast,” Archie, after whom Chef Rick has named a Creole BBQ Shrimp course, “Archie McLaren’s New Orleans-Style Barbequed Shrimp with Warm Soppin’ Bread,” has said of Rick, “The guy is a Soulful Prince!”
Just to give you an idea of some of Rick’s “favorite things” …
Most engaging and memorable meal: “On Cathy’s and my honeymoon in Paris, I needed a recommendation as to where to take my new wife for her birthday dinner. Our hotel concierge didn’t hesitate a second in suggesting the Michelin 3-star restaurant Tour d’Argent. With a table overlooking Cathedral Notre Dame and the River Seine, from the martinis, “free” hors-d'oeuvres, Kir Royales, pressed duck, and white peach flambé, to Cathy throwing rolls at our dining neighbor (It was a wonderful accident! Bell sleeves, you know!), being our honeymoon and her birthday, it was by far the most memorable meal, ever!”
The other chefs he admires are quote: “My friends Marie Will and Jim Clendenen of Au Bon Climat Winery are two of the greatest cooks (chefs) I’ve ever known, although they don’t work professionally. Locally (the greater Central Coast) I’ve always admired Laurent Grangien of Bistro Laurent in Paso Robles and I have great respect for my peers who I’ve grown up with that are still “swingin’ their whisks,” including Laurent, Ian McPhee, James Sly, and a few of those young guys, Alphonso Curti of Trattoria Uliveto, Clark Staub of Full of Life Foods, and Anthony Endy of Rooney’s Irish Pub. Nationally, I have always loved the food of Dean Fearing, Emeril Lagasse, and Wolfgang Puck.”
Famous people for whom Rick has prepared meals: Jimmy Carter, Tom Petty, Robin Ventura, Herman Munster, Martha Stewart, Boz Scaggs, Jesse Jackson, Jonathan Winters, Jackson Browne, Robert Mondavi, David Crosby, Horace Grant, Metallica and Jimmy Messina. And Music … This engaging fellow is into an array of Music! Delta Blues, Zydeco (Queen Ida has dined at his restaurant!), Rock & Roll, Rhythm & Blues, etc. etc. etc. Rhythm, rhythm, rhythm …
We know you will be energized and edified by the richly rhythmic quality of Rick’s unique Central California cuisine during his array of Luncheon courses at the Thirty-First Annual Central Coast Wine Classic Rare & Fine Wine & Lifestyle Auction, especially in the rhythmic symbiotic culinary union with his Dear Friend of ours, Chef Frank Ostini.
Chef Rick's Ultimately Fine Foods
Restaurant & Catering
4869 S Bradley Rd, Santa Maria, CA 93455
Phone: (805) 680-7351
Chef Frank Ostini
Hitching Post II
Attending and supporting the Central Coast Wine Classic virtually from its beginning, no individual has been more continuously supportive of the Central Coast Wine Classic than Frank Ostini. His donations to the Live Auction alone have over the years raised over one-quarter of a million dollars for the event. Frank is extraordinarily gracious, generous and gregarious when it comes to assisting others, and he does so at a very high level, as The Hitching Post and Hartley-Ostini Wines are held in very high esteem by wine critics, collectors and gourmets alike. Decades prior to the extraordinarily successful film “Sideways,” Frank Ostini was famous among those of us who are his friends for an amazing array of fine food and wine activities.
Frank Ostini grew up in and around the Casmalia Hitching Post, his family’s steakhouse on the Central Coast of California since 1952. Specializing in traditional wood fire barbecue, Frank has expanded his menu to cook most anything over the embers at his Hitching Post II restaurant in Buellton, California. With high acclaim from the Los Angeles Times, New York Times, Gourmet and Sunset magazines and enthusiastic support from Chefs Wolfgang Puck and Bobby Flay, Frank has become the regional spokesman for what is popularly known as “Santa Maria Style BBQ,” a feast that features meats grilled over a red oak fire.
Many years ago, Frank expanded his interest in fine wine by being the President of the now historic Central Coast Wine Society. Since 1984 Frank, with partner Gray Hartley, has also made Hitching Post Wines, specializing in Santa Barbara County Pinot Noir. Frank has recently received widespread international attention since his Hitching Post II and Hitching Post Pinot Noirs were featured in the aforementioned Academy Award-winning film Sideways. The winery has 800 barrels and produces about 15,000 cases a year. “When we started to make wine, I had one purpose,” says Frank. “To get good wine on my family restaurant’s table- wine that I produced. Doing the food and wine together is all I ever wanted, and it’s still all I really want to do”
Frank Ostini lives near the restaurant in Buellton with wife, Jami and his two children, Gray and Gabriella. When not in the restaurant or working in the winery, Frank is out promoting Santa Maria Style BBQ and Santa Barbara County Wines at charity events across the country. Speaking of Charity Events, Frank ALWAYS donates his time, his food, his wine and his energy to the Central Coast Wine Classic, and this year is obviously no exception, as his combination offering with his dear friend Jim Clendenen, as always, will be one of the most popular offerings in the Auction.
It is with extreme gratitude that we thank Frank for his many, many contributions to the Central Coast Wine Classic, including presenting the Auction Luncheon on a number of occasions, as well as of course presenting superb meat courses at several Hearst Castle Dinners, including this 31st year. We know that you will be comprehensively edified by the gracious and generous and talented Frank Ostini’s expertise and dynamically and graciously interactive good energy!
What a Superlative Team Duet of Chefs for the Rare & Fine Wine & Lifestyle Auction! As fine as it gets! Ultimately Fine for certain!!!
406 East Highway 246, Buellton, California