Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Chef Todd Fisher shows off the freshness of the Salinas Valley to the Cuisineist

Chef Todd Fisher is a local icon and knows the culinary value of the Salinas Valley first hand. He showed off his culinary talent to the Cuisineist and created a lunch that showed off the products of this very fertile valley that supply's most of the U.S.A's vegetables

Of course no lunch would be complete in Salinas with out Guacamole and Fresh Salsa. Chef Todd made a Broccoli Rabe Guacamole and Fresh salsa that would rival any we have had. This was a great way to start our lunch off.

The Chef's Caesar salad with Andy Boy Romaine Hearts was probably the freshest that we have had, understating we were very close to where it was grown.

We have always considered Chefs culinary artists. Todd Fisher's
Broccoli Rabe & Carne Asada Tacos was a true culinary work of art. He really captured the flavors of the Salinas Valley with this dish.

The next dish that was layered in flavor was his Colored Cauliflower Enchiladas . This dish was paired with the Nth Degree 2007 Pinot Noir and was in our opinion the best pairing of the afternoon.

Last but not least Chef came up with a very interesting and very appropriate desert, Pickly Pear Sorbet. This was so on target as we had just visited a Cactus Pear farm with Margaret D Arrigo of D Arrigo Brothers Farms in the Salinas Valley.

Join Scott from The Cuisineist as he speaks with Executive Chef Todd Fisher about the dishes he created and the Salinas Valley. To find out more about Chef Todd Fisher please visit

Monday, December 7, 2009


RAOs Guests Will Taste the Victory; Rao’s at Caesars Palace Las Vegas Celebrates

by Offering New “Throwdown” Menu on Christmas Eve and Day

You Can’t beat the Italians when it comes to the fishes. On The Food Network’s “Throwdown with Bobby Flay,” the Pellegrino family of the world-renowned Rao’s defeated Bobby Flay. The challenge: who could prepare the best Feast of Seven Fishes, the Italian holiday tradition where families gather and share a delicious multi-course meal of fish.

'Tis the season for the tables to be turned when the Pellegrino family of Rao's Restaurant at Caesars Palace challenged chef Bobby Flay of Mesa Grill fame to a holiday Throwdown! But despite the victory, this was a lovefest or perhaps love-“feast” all around.

“Really, we both won,” says Frankie Pellegrino. “It was an honor to work with as well as compete against such an esteemed colleague as Bobby Flay. This was an incredible experience. Family is why we do what we do and it was great to bring home a win for Team Pellegrino. We wish everyone a very happy holiday season.”

Flay turned up the heat and fired up his team in order to compete against a notorious family of more than 100 years of Italian tradition on its side. Three mouth-watering fish dishes were the menu du jour. As an excited audience gathered, they cheered and basked in the festive charm as our chefs got down to business.

“Family was everything in this competition, even down to the recipes. One of the winning dishes was a fresh spice Rosso Bruno tomatoes and lobster medallions. This is a dish I have been cooking since 1986. The fresh ingredients make all the difference in making the dish light and full of flavor,” says Carla Pellegrino.

On Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, guests at RAOs can experience the “Throwdown Menu” inspired by “Throwdown with Bobby Flay.” The menu begins with the antipasti: Cacciuco Toscano, a seafood soup with lobster, shrimp, calamari, sea bass, PEI mussels, cockles clams and scallops in white wine and tomatoes broth over a Italian garlic bread. Next: Pellegrino’s perennial recipe, the Linguini All’aragosta. The third is the classic Brazino Sotto Sale, a Mediterranean sea bass baked under salt crust.