Fresh and Local Inspires Chef Brian Lewis's Creativity
Jun 17, 2013 | 9:11 pm
Best known for his collaboration with actor Richard Gere in developing The Barn and The Farmhouse at The Bedford Post, Chef Brian Lewis’ cooking has garnered him national acclaim including Esquire Magazine’s Best New Restaurant and stellar New York Times reviews. His early experiences in the kitchens of legendary chefs Jean Louis Palladin and Marco Pierre White strongly shaped Chef Lewis’ refined yet adventurous cooking style.
Before opening his own Elm Restaurant in New Canaan CT, Lewis contemplated making a splash and setting trends in Manhattan. But after some soul searching, he remained true to himself deciding that everything he needed to express his culinary aspirations was right in his backyard.
“Westchester County Chefs and increasingly in Fairfield County have been turning to local farmers for their ingredients long before farm-to-table became a buzzword,” says Lewis. One of his closest-to-home sources, Millstone Farm in nearby Wilton, supplies much of his fresh greens like lettuce, fennel, and sage while Cato Corners of Colchester supplies a wide array of artisan cheeses.
Situated in the heart of New Canaan's diamond studded shopping district lined with stores like Polo Ralph Lauren and Henry C. Reid. Elm's exterior is very small and unassuming but step inside and you encounter a spacious bar and dining area that balances sleek and comfortable...all glass, unassuming leather, and natural wood. An open kitchen to the back clangs with activity emanating aromas of fresh seasonal ingredients at different stages of preparation.
Chef Lewis clearly has his hands in every aspect of the kitchen from menu and recipe development, ingredient sourcing, to meal narration. Lately, his wine pairing dinners amply showcase his passion like this Evening Celebrating the Food & Wines of Tuscany: