Over the last few years I have eaten a lot of food. Consequently this is just as evident in my waistline as it is my palate. Your palate is at its most basic form, your perception of a meal. Your unique ability to dissect ingredients swirling in your mouth and detect the subtle nuances of seasoning, cooking preparation, and quality. For one to possess a discerning palate, they must have a scrupulous background in food.
Being brought up in restaurants, classically trained, and enhanced by hotels, catering, and fine dining; my palate has undeniably developed.
Within the past four years I have lived and worked in Connecticut, Massachusetts, New York, and now Philadelphia. In all of these locations, I have had incredible food experiences which have helped shape the Chef I am today. I didn’t have the opportunity to share these experiences then, and as a result I plan to do so moving forward in Philly.
Moving to Philadelphia has been a hectic, trying, and (For the most part!) exciting experience. There is one thing that is certain about Philly locals; they are huge foodies. They care about where their produce comes from, what preparations go into the meal, and who’s in the kitchen making it. Philly has an incredibly interesting food scene. There are small niche restaurants, dives, behemoth steak houses, oyster bars, food trucks, and farmers markets on every corner. All of this adding to my new adventure, a digression from my New York City food battle, and setting new sights in the city of brotherly love.
Using my discerning palate, I plan to eat my way through Philadelphia and share these personal experiences with you. The best and the worst of it.
Oyster House: Pan-Roasted Grouper with pancetta lardons, french lentils, and mustard greens
To start things off I want to talk about a revelation. Oyster House’s Pan-seared Grouper; First off, forgive me for my incoherent ramble, but I must tell you how deliciously moist this fish was, crisp skin, perfectly seasoned – letting the quality of the fish show. The combination of the flaky fish with the salted-chewy pancetta lardons, and the creamy french lentils, which on their own were a standout, really made for a quite memorable meal. This was a very simple dish but had flawless seasoning and execution which made me realize I don’t eat enough fish out, most likely because its never cooked this well when ordered.
Try it out for yourself.
Chef Sean Gallagher
1516 Sansom St.
Philadelphia PA 19102
ph (215) 567-7683
fax (215) 567-1673