We just met the latest executive chef to run The Commissary since chef David McMillan took over the spot from John Tesar. Tesar sold his stake in the business to pursue his next restaurant challenge, Spoon in north Dallas. The new chef is Ross Demers and you quite possibly heard of him from Mi Piaci in Addison.
Demers was classically trained at the Cordon Bleu in Los Angeles and has been cheffing for the past eight years.
We asked what sort of changes the chef had in mind and he had plenty to offer.
“We are changing a lot of meats and going back to all-natural. I am bringing in some game like bison and venison. We will be doing a braised lamb instead of this lamb burger. So I will be braising a lamb leg and doing a picked lamb pita. I will also be slimming down the snacks and getting rid of things like the popcorn,” said Demers.
The chef will also be offering more plated entrees through the blackboard so he can offer up more fresh ingredients he might have found within the past day or so. This always gives a chef a chance at self-expression and makes for a happy customer as well.
He is getting a feel for the clientele and pairing down the menu to reflect more of what they are actually ordering. The brunch menu has already been chopped down to a short list of 15 items. One of the chef’s favorite items currently on the brunch menu is the house smoked salmon and collard green benedict served with a chipotle hollandaise and smoked bacon. It’s pretty special all right.
One of the challenges the chef finds is when a theater goer stops in 20 minutes before curtain call and expecting a full meal. For most restaurants not in the fast food industry this simply isn’t possible if done correctly. How the restaurant plans to battle this conundrum is to offer reservations which ask pointed details such as what show you might be attending and which theater. This makes for a better experience.
The night I stopped in the chef was playing around with a terra cotta pig hibachi and grilling some meats he would be serving at his first Commissary wine dinner along with new sommelier Jeffrey Gregory. As he turned the tiny skewers of pig and octopus he turned up to smile. “Pretty neat, eh?”