On Saturday night, November 8, The Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa kicked off Street Eats, an indoor, upscale food festival. Wolfgang Puck joined Bobby Flay, Geoffrey Zakarian, Michael Schulson, Stephen Kalt, Greg and Marc Sherry, and Borgata’s executive chefs Tom Biglan and Thaddeus DuBois to run some of the 20 food stations at the event as they entertained 1,500 guests with delicious dishes, music, games, and a live duck-cooking demo. Here are the top seven offerings from Street Eats:
1. Bobby Flay’s pumpkin arancini with ricotta and sage pesto. The line was out the door for this one, no surprise there; however, it took just a little longer than it needed to because Bobby took the time to grab someone’s phone and prove to the person on the other end that yes, he was Bobby Flay, and yes, the five people assembling the dishes behind him could hold down the fort while he stopped to chat.
2. Geoffrey Zakarian’s pulled braised lamb croquette bocadillo with pickled butternut squash, mint pesto, and spicy yogurt on toasted bianco. The chef had a busy day, first with his cooking demonstration (his pesto made with parsley shocked the crowd), and then with his cookbook signing, but he still found time to saunter around the event and pose for pics.
3. Greg and Marc Sherry’s Kobe beef Rueben with Asian slaw, Kobe brisket, Swiss cheese fondue, fry sauce, koolickles, and artisan bread. Usually the word “Rueben” would make me run the other way, but this was incredibly tasty, and it went quickly.
4. Michael Schulson’s yellowtail tataki lettuce cup with spicy mayo, Japanese pilaf, and scallion. Schulson had just finished showing us how to make sushi in the palm of his hand, holding it up vertically for all to see, so we’re not surprised he served us food to palm, too. It was an easy, refreshing bite between heavier courses, and he even manned the booth himself all night long.
5. Stephen Kalt’s crispy lamb ribs with pomegranate balsamic glaze and frittelle; spaghetti pie with ricotta and salami. The two didn’t necessarily pair perfectly together, but were each delicious in their own right. Kalt won Best Booth of the Night, too.
6. Tom Biglan’s braised oxtail slider with sauerkraut, currywurst, and potato roll; lobster arancini with remoulade sauce. Chef Biglan was responsible for nine other booths at the event, everything from Yucatan skewers in various sauces to ramen mac n’ cheese, and we were sufficiently impressed.
7. Wolfgang Puck’s lacquered Chinese duck bao bun sandwiches. Wolf dutifully posed for pictures while slicing away, and for someone serving duck, he was quite a ham.