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FOOD & WINE

Strawberry Sorbet

Strawberry Sorbet

It's almost Memorial Day Weekend! Strawberry sorbet made from fresh strawberries is one of my favorite dessert components of all time. I love using this strawberry sorbet recipe for client dinners. The sweet and refreshing sorbet pairs so well with so many different...

Classic Tiramisu with Marsala and Mascarpone

Classic Tiramisu with Marsala and Mascarpone

I love tiramisu in all forms, but the classic combination of ladyfingers, chocolate, coffee, and custard is my favorite. This recipe deviates from the original by adding masala to the custard, and by soaking the ladyfingers in espresso and marsala rather than just...

The Best Easy Pizza Dough

The Best Easy Pizza Dough

Easy Pizza Dough? Is there really such a thing? Nancy Silverton talks in her Chef's Table episode about how she spent 10 years perfecting the Mozza Pizza Dough.... so can it really be easy? (PS if you haven't gone to Mozza in LA -- add it to your bucket list). While...

Hi! I'm Sydney,

nice to meet you!

I left a marketing career in Hollywood to go to the Culinary Institute of America. After a few years of working in restaurants, I am now a private chef and sommelier in the 30a area.

Wine FAQ’s – Answered!

Is Wine Vegan?

Is wine vegan? Is it not? I think it depends on the vegan. Here's the deal. Clarifying wine happens a few different ways. Some of these processes are vegan, and others may not be. Fining is one process of clarification. Fining occurs by adding a "fining agent" to a...

Why Wine Contains Sulfites

Why do wines have added sulfites? What do Sulfites do, anyways? SO2, Sulfur Dioxide is a naturally occurring part of the winemaking process. It is a byproduct of making alcohol. However, it can also be added at a few different winemaking points to preserve the...

Wine Structure: What is Tannin in Wine?

Tannin is a characteristic found in red grape skins and seeds as well as oak. They cause an astringent or bitterness when either too much is extracted from grapes or when young. As a wine matures, either in a fermenting vessel such as oak or stainless steel, the...

THE LATEST & GREATEST

Healthy Seed & Nut Bars

Healthy Seed & Nut Bars

I am obsessed with these healthy seed and nut bars! They are packed with tons of nutrients, protein, good fats, and just the right amount of sweetness. I like to cut these up into smaller cubes and keep them in the freezer to keep on hand. You can be flexible with the...

Paleo Pumpkin Spice Muffins

Paleo Pumpkin Spice Muffins

I came up with these paleo pumpkin spice muffins, that are also nut free, for some very special clients of mine. In a previous post (on Peruvian chicken skewers), I mentioned that I have been hired to cook for some clients in October with a lot of different dietary...

Grillo: Sicilian White Wine

Grillo: Sicilian White Wine

This Grillo from L'arca was the first bottle of wine I tried from Martha Stewart Wine Co. Sicilian White Wines You Need to Know: Grillo We’ve already done a post about an intro to Sicilian reds, covering Frappato, a native red grape. Later this month I will also be...

Pound Cake Bites – The Best Accident

Pound Cake Bites – The Best Accident

These accidental pound cake bites came about because it's The Somm Chef's birthday month, my birthday month, and the anniversary of Ian and I moving down to FL (and sort of the anniversary of The Somm Chef inception). In short - September of last year was quite the...

Intro to Napa Chardonnay: Chateau Montelena

Intro to Napa Chardonnay: Chateau Montelena

Chateau Montelena may not be a name you're too familiar with. However, you may have heard of the movie "Bottle Shock" with all-star cast Chris Pine, Alan Rickman, and Bill Pullman. This film is (loosely) based around the blind tasting in 1976 called the Judgement of...

Carbonara with Pancetta: Go To Weeknight Meal

Carbonara with Pancetta: Go To Weeknight Meal

Carbonara is an awesome meal for those nights when you don't feel like cooking and when you're out of groceries. Bon Appétit says that it's the perfect "no food in the house" dinner, and I completely agree. So what is Carbonara? Carbonara is an egg-based sauce that...

Truffle Pasta Dough

Truffle Pasta Dough

Truffle pasta may sound like a lot of work, but I promise it's actually quite easy. And no - you don't need a stand mixer, or a food processor, or even a pasta machine to make it! You can use those things, of course, but not required. The thing I love about homemade...

Alexander Valley Cabernet : Jordan 2008 Wine Review

Alexander Valley Cabernet : Jordan 2008 Wine Review

Alexander Valley may not be the first place you think of when you hear "California Cabernet Sauvignon." Typically, one's mind most naturally thinks of Napa Valley. However, today we are going to take a look at an exceptional winery in Alexander Valley, in Sonoma...

Peruvian Chicken Skewers and Basil Chimichurri

Peruvian Chicken Skewers and Basil Chimichurri

These Peruvian chicken skewers have a bit of a back story. In October I'm cooking for some amazing clients. They booked me for their wedding weekend to prepare and serve food at their home for three different days: a wedding kick-off evening, breakfast and lunch for...

Girls Getaway Weekend & The Somm Chef

Girls Getaway Weekend & The Somm Chef

Hi, Everyone! I am so excited to announce something that I've been working on with the Rosemary Beach Foundation and Hidden Lantern Bookstore. What is Girls Getaway? I am teaching a class for Girls Getaway weekend which happens every Super Bowl weekend. Girls Getaway...