Last evening I was an invited guest of the Hilton Anatole to sample a few of the dishes that might be making the Sēr Steak+Spirits menu when the restaurant opens for business this October. On hand was Anatole’s executive chef Thomas Welther and Sēr executive chef Anthony Van Camp who served dinner to a group of local writers and Hilton brass.
Due to construction on the 27th floor where Sēr is located the staff created a makeshift kitchen and dining room in the hotel’s rotunda, including a searing 800 degree grill just outside in view of the guests. Welther noted that he started working for the Anatole 2 years before Van Camp was born thus he was able to stay inside and engage the guests while the young executive chef labored in the heat and prepared dinner on the grill.
This was a labor of love for chef Van Camp as he tended the fire and aged Wagyu beef.
The meal began with a flurry of salads in mini portions and included a baby wedge salad with house smoked bacon and a Regina blu tomato-oregano dressing; an heirloom tomato and house-made mozzarella with ghost pepper oil, thyme and a gin “fizz”; and a beautiful local arugula salad with lemon-honey vinaigrette and Reggiano.
The salads were all light and refreshing with one major surprise, the ghost peppers served with Van Camp’s take on the Caprese spiked with ghost pepper oil. The dressing wasn’t as crazy spicy as you might imagine, but it did bring a few tears to my eyes. That is a good thing.
Let’s take a look at the beef.
22oz Prime “Cowboy” Ribeye, Fingerling Potatoes, Tomato Jam, Hollandaise
Wagyu Shortrib, Chocolate Glaze, Mango, Basil
Bone-In File of Beef, House-Made bacon, Whole Grain Mustard
21 Day Aged NY Strip, In-House Balsamic-Glazed Shallots
Wagyu Spinalis, Fingerling Potatoes, SR Steak Sauce
Day Boat Scallops, Black Truffle Vinaigrette, Parsnips, Spinach
Fresh Fried Beignets, Cafe Du Monde Syrup