Lawrence Local Table is staging a “Dinner at Decade” this month, and to honor its host, the culinary collective is building the meal around coffee.
Just don’t expect to see the ingredient in every dish, says LLT member and Hank Charcuterie owner-chef Vaughn Good. Instead, he and Hank sous chef Jay Tovar Ballagh, as well as 715 executive chef Zach Thompson, are cooking up a six-course menu that follows “the basic processes a coffee bean goes through before consumption,” per Lawrence Local Table’s description.
That includes a “fresh” course (caviar, pickled apple, greens, beet) as well as fermented, dried, roasted, ground and brewed courses, the last of which — a chocolate cake with espresso gelato and coffee service — actually features the special ingredient.
The event, slated for Sept. 27 at Decade coffee shop, 920 Delaware St., is Lawrence Local Table’s fourth since launching in February. So far, the collective’s events have all either sold out or come close to it, says Vaughn, though tickets are still available for this month’s meal.
715’s Katrina Weiss and Jess Anthony will begin serving up complimentary cocktails starting at 6 p.m., followed by dinner at 7 p.m.
Tickets are $75, and can be purchased online at lawrencelocaltable.com.
In case you’ve forgotten, that burger you’re eating came from a living, breathing animal.
Obvious, we know, but in this day and age, when you can pick up a bag of precooked chicken tenders from the grocery store or chow down on paper-thin slices of turkey at Subway, it’s easy to forget how meat makes that journey from the farm to our tables.
The folks at Hank Charcuterie, 1900 Massachusetts St., are inviting the public to experience part of the process with free butchering demonstrations.
Demand for classes has been so great that owner Vaughn Good decided to simply make the shop’s regular butcherings open to visitors.
“It’s something we do anyway. We’re always breaking down whole animals,” Good says. “People can ask questions and request certain cuts directly off the animal.”
Good and his sous chef, Jay Tovar-Ballagh, supervise the demonstrations at 6 p.m. every other Tuesday and at 3 p.m. every other Saturday. On Tuesdays, they butcher a whole hog; on Saturdays, a whole lamb and/or goat.
They’ve only hosted two classes so far (the next are scheduled for this evening and Saturday) but Good says the response has been positive. People, it seems, are curious to know where their food comes from.
The first demonstration drew just one visitor, while the second attracted a diverse “mix” of about eight people, he says.
Last week, Vaughn hosted the young daughter of one of his regular customers. It was her idea to watch the butchering, and she had her father bring her along.
“She did pretty well,” Vaughn recalls.
Try something unusual or know of something interesting going on at a Lawrence restaurant? Send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org or contact me on Twitter @hlavacekjoanna. For more local food and restaurant news, click here.