Cobaya Gourmet Guinea Pigs dinners. The "mission statement" of the Cobaya group is a simple one: "to get talented chefs to cook great, interesting, creative meals for an audience of adventurous, open-minded diners." I usually don't draw much attention to Cobaya over here at FFT, but I think we've got a particularly exciting one in store at the end of this month. Normally the chef, the menu, and the location of the Cobaya events are kept under wraps, but in a break from the usual routine, we're lifting the cloak a bit and letting you know who will be our chef for the evening.
If you're an avid follower of contemporary cooking discussions, you will probably already be familiar with Aki Kamozawa and Alex Talbot, the couple behind Ideas in Food. Ideas in Food is a culinary consulting business, it's a blog, and it's now a book as well: Ideas in Food: Great Recipes and Why They Work. Alex and Aki are relentlessly creative and their ideas are a frequent source of inspiration to other chefs. A quick browse of the blog will give a good idea of some of the things they're up to. Just in the past week, for example, a series of ideas on using a whole fish: crispy roulade of black bass with potato-ricotta gnocchi glazed in oxtail butter with avocado mosaic seasoned with yuzu and cayenne; linguine with black bass head in XO sauce; bone-in bass loin with smoked citron marmalade, potato oil and ribeye jus; bass collar with pickled watermelon rind and coffee cured watermelon sauce; bass belly cured with surryano ham ... dang. Their recently released book has also gotten national attention, including in the NY Times, and has some great practical tips and recipe ideas for home cooks and professionals alike.
Alex will be in Miami and cooking a Cobaya dinner, with some assistance from the gastroPod, on Saturday, February 26, 2011. And we're pretty excited. More details, including how to request seats (still might be a couple left), can be found here: experiment #10 - CobayIdeas in Food - 2/26.
If you're intrigued, please keep in mind some important points that are part of the disclaimer for every Cobaya event: There is no "menu". There are no choices. You'll be eating what the chef chooses to make for the night. If you have food related allergies, strict dietary requirements, religious restrictions; are salt sensitive, vegetarian, pescatarian, or vegan; don't like your meat cooked medium rare, or are pregnant: this meal is probably not for you. Do not expect white-glove service. Don't ask for your sauce on the side. Just come and enjoy.