FOOD & HOME
Savoy Café Chef Jack Shields and his award winning chowder.
So Good!! Savoy Café is Crowned Chowder Champ
Crocodile Restaurant People’s Choice wining chowder.
hile chowder isn’t synonymous with vegan cuisine, Savoy Café’s Jack Shields, son of owners Paul and Kathy Shields, proves that you don’t need dairy, or even traditional ingredients, to create a standout chowder. As this year’s winner of Santa Barbara’s 9th Annual Chowder Fest, Shields, who is sous chef at Savoy Café, drew his inspiration from the “sweet, salty, and spicy flavors” of the vegan food he worked with while living in San Francisco. In fact, this coconut milk-based rendition – a play on traditional panang curry – was his first experimentation with chowder. The winning recipe includes coconut milk, onion, ginger, purple potatoes, kabocha squash, and bay scallops, and while it’s technically not vegan, Savoy’s first entry into the popular chowder competition shows that chowder doesn’t necessarily need cream to shine. We’d say he’s onto something. Also taking home honors at the October event held at the Santa Barbara Maritime Museum was Crocodile Restaurant & Bar, which claimed third place in the judged category and won the overall People’s Choice honors. Bluewater Grill took second place in the judged category.—By Hana-Lee Sedgwick w w w. f o o d – h o m e . c o m
“I’ve been wanting to do something like this for years,” the restaurateur said. In May he finally took the plunge. Mishler didn’t want a huge space (the restaurant holds around 55) and he saw Santa Barbara Arts District as a perfect location, sandwiched between the Arlington, Victoria, and Granada theatres. The remodeled, handsome, contemporary space boasts windows facing State Street that allow sunlight in. Concrete floors, exposed brick walls, long wooden banquettes, art on the walls by Ginny Speirs, bentwood chairs, and ceiling fans add to the casually elegant atmosphere. Thankfully, you can hear your dining companion – with pleasant soft music playing in the background. The Victorian sandwich, a hip and tasty spin on a BLT, with roasted chicken, bacon, apple, arugula, tomato, and pickled vegetables, pops with flavor. Oh, and the accompanying shoestring french fries? No surprise they’re as tasty and irresistible as those at Mishler’s former roost. I look forward to dinner in the near future. Porchetta with mustard braised leeks beckons. As does Faroe Islands Scottish Salmon with haricot verts and roasted butternut squash. As does the “Chocolate Something” on the menu for dessert. Pop in and “roost” over a relaxed meal and savor seasonal fare for lunch or dinner that includes rotisserie roasted meats and vegetables, fresh salads, grilled seafood and steaks, along with local and imported wines and craft beers. The “Rules of the Roost” promise sums it all up: “We will provide our guests with food that is tastefully crafted, humanely raised, mindfully sourced, and fairly priced.” —By Leslie Westbrook Roost, 1305 State St, Santa Barbara, phone: (805) 845-6337 www.roostsb.com . Open for lunch Mon - Fri 11:30 am to 2 pm; dinner Mon – Sat 5:30 pm to close