Last night,Conscious Bite Out's
took place at chef Frank Jeannetti'sEssensia
. The event was hosted by founders
Marcela Andron and Veronica Menin. They stressed choosing restaurants
that support vegan- and vegetarian-friendly diets, as well as
using local products.
The hourlong cocktail reception was held on the airy loggia, where two
bartenders prepared "spa cooler" cocktails, an organic
blend of Veev açaí spirit, fresh lime juice, seasonal cucumbers, and mint. Sporadically
served throughout the mingling of about 40 guests were
sweet-potato/pumpkin croquettes, portobello satay, and eggplant
People sat at communal tables of ten while Chef Jeannetti explained the tomatoes used
in the chilled vine-ripened tomato soup were from Paradise Farms in
Homestead. The black pepper was the only nonorganic
product in the dish.
The salad was a universal favorite. It
consisted of red and yellow beet carpaccio with shaved fennel,
organic arugula, Maytag blue cheese, candied walnuts, and dark cherry
Guests had a choice between pan-roasted
local hog fish -- served with smashed sweet plantains, charred
sweet-corn edamame succotash, and orange-yellow pepper cumin sauce -- or
the vegetarian alternative of truffle-scented spinach and wild
mushroom risotto with aged Parmesan and white alba truffle oil.
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The dessert was a fresh strawberry
panna cotta made with organic berries from the Redland.
The dishes were plucked from Essensia's regular menu, and the dinner cost $85 per person.