New Chef at Absinthe

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Photo by ©2006 frankenyimages.com.

There’s a new executive chef at ~ABSINTHE BRASSERIE & BAR~ in Hayes Valley, Adam Keough, who begins on August 17th (Jamie Lauren is now at Beechwood in Venice, Los Angeles). He will be responsible for the food for lunch, dinner, brunch, private dining, and the bar at Absinthe, as well as for Arlequin Café. The Boston-native’s background includes working with Joshua Skenes at Chez TJ in Los Gatos, and for the Mina Restaurant Group at Arcadia in San Jose, and he opened Stonehill Tavern for Mina at the St. Regis Resort, Monarch Beach in Dana Point, to much acclaim.

We had a chance to talk about upcoming menu changes, which will entail more bar snacks (like his homemade garlic pretzels), and adding some Italian flair to the menu. New appetizers will include beef carpaccio, and housemade fennel sausage in a grain mustard butter sauce, along with two to three soups (don’t worry, the onion soup will remain). Some new entrées on the menu will include a steak, plus a shellfish stew, butter-poached halibut, and some creative sides. Oh yeah, and short ribs made in a boeuf bourguignon style. (Vegetarians can have wild nettle and ricotta cannelloni with roasted macadamia nuts, confit of lemon, and basil cream.) The lunchtime menu will include a delicious-sounding BLT, with Berkshire pork cheek and Neuske’s bacon, plus miner’s lettuce, heirloom tomato, and aioli. Yeah, sign me up. Brunch will integrate a roast of the day, like a stuffed and carved lamb leg, and the Niçoise salad will have a twist—it will be made with potato-encrusted steelhead trout, with an olive relish, radish, wax beans and haricots verts, and an anchovy dressing. Am looking forward to trying his menu.