5 Questions for Tony DiSalvo
Tony DiSalvo is executive chef at Whist at the Viceroy Santa Monica Hotel and was formerly executive chef of Jean Georges in New York (he cites Jean-Georges Vongerichten as the chef who has influenced him most). His menu at Whist is Mediterranean-inspired (he's Sicilian), but don't be surprised to come across a slider.
What's coming next on your menu? We've just added some things including BLT sliders with heirloom tomatoes on Hawaiian bread, heirloom tomato soup with popcorn crouton and shaved parmesan, as well as Kurobuta pork Milanese with lemon housemade horseradish and celery and sage speck risotto. Coming up in October, we'll be doing a special Sunday Oktoberfest dinner pairing a variety of our homemade sausages with different styles of beer.
Latest ingredient obsession? All of the stone fruit right now are amazing and I’m using them all over the menu. Peaches with burrata, apricots with veal, cherries with lamb. The melons and figs are great right now too. And the morel season in Oregon is at a peak.
The one piece of kitchen equipment you can't live without, other than your knives? I’ve been using a pressure cooker for everything. I just made a Oaxacan black mole in it at home that turned out amazing.
Favorite breakfast? Green eggs and ham at Huckleberry. The house-made English muffins are ridiculous.
The last non-food-related book you read? Jay-Z's bio, "Decoded."
Whist, 1819 Ocean Ave., Santa Monica, (310) 260-7500, www.viceroyhotelsandresorts.com/santamonica.
-- Betty Hallock
Photo credit: Grey Crawford