About three-fourths of the way through photographing the dinner series, “London is a city in Oregon,” I took a short break and sat down next to the owners of Kicthen Cru. We sat back and watched the four chefs work, create and laugh together. I told them, in all honesty, that I was surprised how down to earth the chefs were. In the food world these four gentlemen are like celebrities. We’re talking Michelin Stars and James Beard Awards and chef-owners of famous restaurants. And there they were, working together, enjoying one another’s contributions and interacting with the staff and the guests like any other normal person. There were no egos, just mouth-watering food creations. That in itself was beautiful to witness and document.
The dinner series served UK-inspired eats paired with Oregon wines and ciders. The Feast dinner included creations like grilled bison with bone marrow bèarnaise, buffalo brisket, scallop tartare, an Oregon mushroom inspired dish titled “forest floor” and a sparkling dessert. (Literally, the dessert, banana + custard knickerbockerglory, was decorated with the UK flag and a sparkler.) Wines from wineries like Stoller Vineyards and J. Scott Cellars (two of my favorite wineries in Oregon) and ciders from Reverend Nat’s Hard Cider filled the guest’s glasses while they enjoyed their collaborative meal.
It was fascinating to watch numerous chefs, upwards of seven at a time, work as an assembly line preparing the guests meal. When it was crunch time all hands were on deck. The plates were prepared quickly and diligently and then whisked out to the excited guests. It was fun to watch and amazing to capture. I watched the guests smile and enjoy their dinner, I’m sure they loved every last bite.
Most people, if given the chance, would have traded in their camera for a fork. I wouldn’t have had it any other way, it was an honor to document this dinner. Ollie, Brad, James and Gabriel- it was a pleasure to watch you four work together, thank you for letting me photograph your dinner series. Ollie, Brad and James- I hope you enjoyed your time in my wonderful city and I hope you come back again soon. Enjoy the photos.
PS. In case you were wondering… yes, their is a city in Oregon called London. It’s in between Eugene and Roseburg on the East side of I-5.