Chopped Salad, All the Things, Olive Brine Vinaigrette
Sourdough Crust Margherita Pizza, Chris Bianco’s Tomatoes, Fresh Mozzarella, Basil
Sourdough Crust Corn Pizza, Corn Panna, Scamorza Cheese, Corn, Guanciale, Chili Marmalade
House Ground Polenta
Polpette, Tomato Sugo, Basil Ricotta
Rigatoni, House Sausage, Smoked Tomato, Onion, Chili
Cheesecake Panna Cotta, Roasted Peaches, Basil Gelee, Basil Crumble, Opal Basil
Fortunate to have two compelling lunches in one week, it was once again Esther’s Kitchen that was called upon to #supportlocal, Sous Chef Ashley Nichole Winkelman predictably representing James Trees’ Restaurant wonderfully from arrival to clean up.
Already an office favorite, an April visit from Ashley and members of since-opened Ada’s at Tivoli Village setting an impossibly high standard for every caterer to follow, it was after taking time to set-up everything including porcelain plates and silverware that guests dove in immediately, a Chopped Salad with “All The Things” still winning over all but one worker who does not eat Pork while two styles of Pizza performed far better than previous, in particular one with Corn that harkens Elotes thanks to silky Corn Pudding and smoky Scamorza.
Offering Esther’s house Polenta without Mushrooms this time, less depth of flavor doing nothing to compromise the buttery Cornmeal’s peerless texture, many took the opportunity to add Sauce from Meatballs to the mix while others simply enjoyed the lightly packed Polpette steeped in Sauce on its own.
Making certain to save room for Pasta, an off-menu tray of Chef Trees’ housemade Rigatoni standing up nicely to housemade Sausage and Onions plus a bit of heat, it was by request that Dessert for twenty-five rounded out the spread, though after tasting one bite of smooth Panna Cotta with Roasted Peaches and fragrant Herbs it seems likely some staff did not get one because others smartly took seconds.
N/A: Making it blog policy to not ‘rate’ places based on catering alone, Esther’s Kitchen is nearly as impressive at the office as in the Arts District and Chef Winkelman deserves a lot of credit for taking on this task singlehandedly.
RECOMMENDED: Sourdough Crust Corn Pizza, House Ground Polenta, Polpette, Cheesecake Panna Cotta.
TIP: Corn Pizza just left the menu in a seasonal swap.
WHAT THE STARS MEAN: 5 World Class, 4 Excellent, 3 Good, 2 Fair, 1 Poor.