Andrew Cain, Chef de Cuisine
Santé at The Fairmont Sonoma Mission Inn & Spa
Chef Cain joined The Fairmont Sonoma Mission Inn & Spa’s culinary team from Sonoma’s St. Francis Winery, where he held the position of Executive Chef.
At the neighboring winery Cain was responsible for ongoing menu development and daily operations. A graduate of the New York’s prestigious Culinary Institute of America (CIA), Cain’s background includes stints at some of the country’s finest including La Folie, San Francisco, Chef de Partie positions at Michele Richard’s Citronelle, the unparalleled French Laundry and Michael Mina’s named San Francisco establishment as well as Sonoma’s El Dorado Kitchen.
Santé Restaurant is the Inn’s premier dining room and has earned a national reputation for its outstanding food. Condé Nast Traveler said ‘it’s worth a special trip just to eat here’ and Gourmet Magazine calls the food ‘the best of the new Wine Country style.’ Only the freshest local produce, meats, poultry and seafood are used to create elegantly simple dishes that let the natural flavors of the food speak for themselves. A wine list, honored with Wine Spectator’s ‘Award of Excellence’ features over 500 Sonoma and Napa wines.
“I believe that menus should reflect not only their locale but the spirit of the area. I strive to purchase the very best seasonal products, design dishes that reflect the essence of the restaurant and present these plates in a handsome manner.” With that as his goal, Cain remains true to his culinary vision, he and his culinary team work closely with local farmers to obtain the finest produce and specialty ingredients.
At The Fairmont Sonoma Mission Inn & Spa resort, Chef Cain oversees a staff of 17 professionals balancing his time between the creative and business side of the restaurant operation. Cain resides in Sonoma County; during his time off he enjoys fishing, gardening and in true Sonoma fashion brewing his own beer.
Salad of Heirloom Tomatoes with Basil Infused Mozzarella, Pickled Watermelon and Shallot Vinaigrette
For the Basil Oil:
2 bunches Fresh Basil, stems removes
1 cup Grape seed Oil
4 tablespoon Salt
1) In a medium stock pot bring one gallon of water to a full boil.
2) Season the water with the Salt.
3) Add the basil and cook for approximately 2 minutes.
4) Remove the basil and place it immediately into a prepared ice bath.
5) Remove the basil from the ice bath and squeeze it dry in a towel to remove any excess liquid.
6) Combine the blanched basil and oil in a blender and mix on high speed to incorporate.
7) Strain the basil oil through a coffee filter overnight, refrigerated.
For the Basil Mozzarella:
9 oz. Fresh Mozzarella
4 oz. Prepared Basil Oil
.25 oz. powdered Gelatin
1/8 cup Whole Milk
1 Tsp Tabasco Sauce
Salt to Taste
1) Bloom the gelatin in the cold milk.
2) When the gelatin in bloomed, heat the mixture until the gelatin is fully dissolved.
3) In a food processer combine the mozzarella, gelatin mixture, basil oil and Tabasco.
4) Season to taste with salt.
5) Pipe the hot mixture into synthetic sausage casings using a sausage press.
6) Allow to set up overnight refrigerated.
For the Pickled Watermelon:
1 lb. of seedless fresh watermelon cut into 1”x1”x1” cubes
½ cup of Champagne or white wine vinegar
1 cup of Water
½ cup granulated sugar
1) Combine the vinegar, water and sugar and bring to a full boil in a small sauce pan.
2) When the sugar is completely dissolved, cool the mixture in the refrigerator.
3) When the pickling liquid is cool pour it over the watermelon and allow to marinate for at least 4 hours.
For the Shallot Vinaigrette:
1 cup Shallots, peeled and blanched until tender
½ cup extra virgin olive oil
½ Grape Seed or Vegetable oil
¼ cup Sherry Wine Vinegar
Salt and white pepper to taste
1) In a blender combine the Vinegar and the shallots and puree on high speed.
2) Slowly drizzle in the oils until emulsified.
3) Season to taste with the salt and pepper.
For the Salad:
– 5 Multi-colored Heirloom tomatoes cut into ¼” slices
– Prepared basil Mozzarella sliced into ¼” slices
– Prepared Shallot Vinaigrette
– Micro Basil
– Prepared Pickled Watermelon Cubes
1) Wash and Slice 5 heirloom tomatoes into ¼” slices.
2) Slice the prepared Basil Mozzarella into ¼” slices.
3) Season the sliced tomatoes with Salt and pepper as well as the prepared Shallot Vinaigrette.
4) Arrange the tomatoes, Mozzarella slices, and Pickled Watermelon on plates.
5) Garnish with Micro Basil leaves.
6) Sauce the plates with the remaining Shallot.