Chef’s Garden at Crystal Springs Resort Has Opened for the Season

Chef’s Garden at Crystal Springs Resort in Hamburg, the outdoor restaurant in a working garden, has just opened for the season. The space is set in an acre of organic gardens that grow herbs, lettuces, vegetables and more for the restaurant (and its four-star sister Restaurant Latour). All the cooking is done over open fire – grills, wood fired ovens and smokers (no gas is used) – while guests enjoy mountain views.

Crystal Springs Executive Chef Anthony Bucco’s new lunch and dinner menus for the season showcase the bounty of local farms from the surrounding Skylands and Black Dirt Region, as well as the garden and the resort’s own farm. Summer appetizers highlight vegetables and seafood: Blackened Gulf Shrimp with seaweed butter; Grilled Rhode Island Squid with charred pineapple salsa; Fire Roasted Vegetables with goats milk curd and garden herb pesto; Field Lettuce Salad with wild rice, fennel, endive, shaved roots and burnt lemon vinaigrette. Entrees offer Miso Roasted Eggplant, marinated in miso, roasted over open fire, smoked and finished with sumac and pomegranate; Swordfish with spice roasted carrots, yogurt, sumac and raisins; Lime Rubbed Spatchcocked Chicken (the backbone is removed before flattening to cook to ensure an even caramelization) with corn succotash and pickled pole beans; Skirt Steak with bone marrow butter and broccolini; Smoked Brisket with compressed watermelon, pickled watermelon rind, pickled chilies and feta; and BBQ Berkshire Pork with heirloom beans and cabbage.

Resort Mixologist Ali Koppel crafts cocktails that take advantage of herbs and vegetables from the surrounding garden: Crystal Clear pairs gin with clear tomato water, basil and the ginger kick of Domaine de Canton; Sun of a Peach blends bourbon, maple, thyme and grilled peaches; Beet the Odds incorporates tawny port, Fernet Branca, local beets and sage; Out of a Hat’s white whiskey is a canvas for carrot, dill and lemon; and the Smokito’s blonde rum for blueberries and garden mint.

The garden has also inspired the new gin and tonic program that pairs a gin with ingredients that highlight the spirit’s flavors: Martin Miller’s gin with peppercorn and strawberry; Hendricks with elderflower and cucumber; Plymouth with a housemade tonic syrup; Sipsmith with chile pepper and grapefruit; Koval with nasturtium and blueberry; and Junipero with basil and pineapple.

Chef’s Garden at Crystal Springs Resort
3 Wild Turkey Way
Hamburg, NJ
Website

[photo source: Crystal Springs]

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