In middle school, we all learned about the Native American custom of not wasting a single part of a slain animal. Apparently, 1789′s relatively new executive chef Anthony Lombardo subscribes to that same idea, and is sticking parts of the animal not classy enough for 1789 into your Tombs menu.
According to an article posted yesterday on Washington City Paper‘s food blog Young and Hungry (where we also got that delightful photo to the left), Lombardo sends the “scraps,” or pieces of meat not classy enough to make it into 1789′s $36 lamb shank, downstairs to the Tombs’s kitchen, where head chef Frederick Valentin repurposes them for less expensive bar food. The Tombs’s lamb burger, lamb ragu, and bratwursts (made from, as described by WCP, nondescript “pig parts”) are all part of these waste-not options.
Although the restaurants expect to see some reduction in costs with this system, it was by no means a purely financial decision. It’s also enhancing what Lombardo describes as Tombs eaters’s “gastronomical experience.” Because personally, that’s what comes to mind when I think of beef scraps.
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As part of an annual contest put on by Food & Wine magazine, Chef Daniel Giusti of 1789 Restaurant was nominated last week as a candidate for the title of The People’s Best New Chef of 2011.
Put on every spring for more than 20 years, the competition honors “exceptionally talented men and women who are pushing culinary boundaries in America.”
Giusti was among 10 chefs nominated from the mid-Atlantic region, and 90 more nominated from restaurants across the country.
As the contest’s name suggests, the winner will be determined by a nationwide poll. Food & Wine encourages the public to vote online for one of these 100 chefs before Tuesday, March 1, but they request that participants only vote for chefs whose restaurants they have visited, to maintain the award’s meaning.
Giusti got his start at the age of 15 as a prep cook at Clyde’s, and has since worked in such varied locations as Las Vegas, New York City, and Piedmont, Italy. As 1789 Restaurant’s Executive Chef since 2008, Giusti has been praised for his youthful, American additions to the menu. In his interview with Food & Wine, Giusti particularly recommended his crispy terrine with lentils, bacon, and celery hearts – though you might want to wait until your parents are in town to check it out.
h/t: The Georgetown Dish
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This afternoon at approximately 2:45 p.m., the D.C. Fire Department responded to a fire on the exterior of the 1789 bakery on 36th Street.
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