I must admit that I have not been as diligent this year, as in years past, in my Academy-Award-nominee-movie-watching duties. But, that’s no reason not to celebrate the glamour and beauty of all things Hollywood! I will be at Nick’s Cove this Sunday to join in the festivities of our Nick’s Cove Oscar Night. Complete with red carpet, photos and complementary champagne the night is not-to-be-missed! Chef Austin is preparing a delicious menu for the evening and we will decorate our glass-decked patio and create theater-style seating for those who wish to enjoy the evening with us! Hope to see you there!
Some say Valentine’s Day is just a Hallmark holiday. Anyone who knows me knows I am a hopeless romantic; therefore I say, “So what?”
I love celebrating love and relish in the idea of a month-long excuse to spread the magic of Cupid’s Arrow. Apparently, I am not the only one who feels this way … During the Month of February our Nick’s Loves Love Package celebrates all things romantic: candle-lit dinners, handmade chocolates, relaxing bubble baths for two, warm crackling fires in our wood burning stoves, calm-inducing massages, delicious beds you won’t want to leave and breakfast delivered right to your bed each morning!
So, I say, bring on the romance and enjoy a quiet, romantic get-away with your loved one! http://www.nickscove.com/specialpackages.html
As the General Manager of one of the largest employers in West Marin, I believe it is my responsibility to contribute to the success of our community. Looking back at 2012, I am really proud that Nick’s Cove had the means to support several charitable organizations that help our community stay healthy. While I am most certainly committed to the success and health of Nick’s Cove, our employees and our guests I enjoy giving back to organizations that support so many who need it. Check out our “Giving Back” page on our website; I am certain the content will begin to fill in for 2013! Cheers! http://www.nickscove.com/givingback.html
What can I say – not only do we have beautiful scenery year-round, but this time of year mother nature really lets her hair down, turns on the sensuality and lights our sky on FIRE!
There are times when the sky is so spectacular that a communal hush takes place in our dining room as our guests and the employees take in the exquisite beauty … and then there’s the moments afterward where all you can hear is the shuffling of chairs as guests run to the Boat Shack to get a unobstructed photo!
In order to help you plan the best time to visit us, we have a special widget (for lack of a better term) on our website that links to a national database that updates the exact time of sunset in our area … you’re welcome!
The information is conveniently located on our dinner menu page!
As I sit at my desk looking out my window, I take in the scenery of our property and I find myself really seeing it for the first time in a long time. I scan over the garden, down to the cottages, the restaurant, over the red legged frog habitat area and finally I stop and fixate on that spectacular, unspoiled Tomales Bay. I watch the sun casts its shimmers on the tranquil waters … in one word: Breathtaking! While my responsibilities require me to be in many locations during a typical day, today, right now, I decided to steal a moment to reflect on 2012 and to smile about my visions for 2013.
Reflecting over 2012 I am grateful, first, for my fantastic husband, my amazing son and our health! 2012 was also good to us at Nick’s Cove; I am grateful for all the guests that visited us for the first time and … for all of our guests that returned! I also am most certainly grateful to have been given the opportunity to be at the helm of one of the most magical places on California’s West Coast. And, in this moment, I am taken aback that this is where I work!
I am proud of our accomplishments at Nick’s Cove and am confident 2013 will bring even more success! In 2013 it is my intention to realize my dream of bringing back a working garden that will provide our chef resources for delicious meals that are truly farm-to-table as well as another place for our guests to enjoy the views of that remarkable Tomales Bay.
Life is good at Nick’s Cove and I am honored to work with such a dedicated group of people that make it their mission every day to provide the best, most sincere hospitality to our guests.
Today is an especially spectacular day on Tomales Bay: My birthday! This morning, my son asked me if I was going to work today and I said, “Absolutely!” I drove here this morning with the windows down and the crisp sea air whipping around my car and I thought, “How lucky am I to work in such a beautiful location?” And, I get to work with a group of really talented people! Life is good…
Those who know me know that I am very picky about my desserts. When dining out, I really only like to select items that have either ginger or lemon as ingredients. Or, hand me a piece of homemade coconut cream pie and I’m in heaven!
Well, lucky for me our Pastry Chef, Gillian Helquist, makes one of my most favorite things … Fresh Ginger Cake. Made with delicious fresh ginger, this cake is best when warm! I hope you all have a fabulous Fall day as I will be enjoying some yummy Fresh Ginger Cake with a candle thrown on top for good measure! Cheers everyone!
Fresh Ginger Cake (makes one nine-inch cake)
4 oz. fresh ginger peeled and grated finely
1 cup mild molasses
1 cup sugar
1 cup grape seed oil
2 ½ cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp ground cinnamon
½ tsp ground cloves
½ tsp black pepper
½ tsp salt
1 cup boiling water
2 tsp baking soda
2 large eggs (room temperature)
In a Small bowl combined the flour, spices and salt. Set aside. In a larger bowl combined ginger, sugar, molasses and oil. Pour baking soda into boiling water the pour it into the molasses mixture whisk to combine then beat in the eggs and finely whisk in the flour. Give the batter a few good beats with the whisk. Pour into a 9 inch cake pan that has been greased and floured. Bake 350* for 1 hour until the cake springs back.
Let cool ten minutes then release from the cake pan. This cake is moist and wonderful it keeps at room temp for 3 -4 days.
Serve with lightly sweetened whipped Crème Fraiche and Santa Rosa plums.
Plum Caramel Sauces
½ cup sugar
¼ cup water
½ cup plum puree
¼ t salt
Start by cutting up 4-5 soft plums. Place then in the blender for 1 min to make the plum puree. Set aside
Place sugar and water in a small heavy bottomed pan and bring to a simmer. Cook until the caramel is dark amber and almost smoking. Carefully pour in the plum puree and cook over medium heat for 2 min. remove from heat and strain. Season with salt. The caramel sauce will keep in the fridge for 1 week. Bring to room temperature before using.
Slice 4-5 firm plums and toss them in the caramel the serve alongside the ginger cake with lightly sweetened crème fraiche
Hello my friends! Thank you for taking the time to read the Nick’s Cove Blog. The Nick’s Cove Crew is busier than ever and ready to provide our readers with all kinds of inside scoop tid-bits! First up, a peek at our entire crew. This photo was taken at our most recent quarterly staff training. We arrived at 8:00 a.m. and headed straight into our training with the hope to further impress our standards of service on our staff, motivate the staff, and provide opportunities for positive feedback and constructive criticism. Then, we turned up the music and had 60+ people working for a solid hour in an organized deep-clean in the restaurant! It’s actually a pretty fun way to start our day!
So, why the photo? Well, a local historian is writing about the history of Tomales Bay and because Nick’s Cove has such a rich history in this area a portion of the book will be dedicated to the history of Nick’s Cove. (I will keep you posted on that progress.) So, the author asked if we had a “group photo.” I didn’t say, “no.” I replied with a question, “When is your deadline?” I quickly called my friend, Erin Wrightsman, who just happens to be an awesome portrait photographer in Petaluma. Fortunately, she had availability on our staff training day – voila … Yes, we do have a group photo!
Recently, Chef Austin Perkins was asked to do a chef’s demo at the local farmers’ market in Point Reyes Station. He enjoys showing off his cooking prowess and we all have a good time watching the crowd enjoy our Nick’s Cove Goat Meatballs. We use Rossotti Ranch goat and they are mouthwateringly delicious! Here’s one of those tid-bits I was talking about … THE RECIPE! Good luck – they are addictive. Just serve them with a warm loaf of sourdough bread, a simple salad with champagne vinaigrette … and enjoy!
Rossotti Ranch Goat Meatballs
2 # ground goat
2-3 oz. ground pork
1 med. carrot, peeled, minced
1 white onion, minced
2 stalks celery, minced
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 T. Chopped parsley
2 T. Parmigiano reggiano
1/2 c good toasted breadcrumb
2 oz. mcevoy evoo, or other premium oil
S and p
7 leeks, white parts only
16 oz. chopped tomato in purée, ie 6 in 1
8 oz. veal or goat stock
4 oz white wine
1 oz balsamic vinegar
1 T toasted and ground coriander
1 t. Red chili flake
Preheat oven to 450.
In a large bowl, combine the first twelve ingredients and vigorously work with hands until all ingredients are combined. Line a sheet pan with parchment paper. Using an ice cream scoop to measure the size of the meatballs begin scooping on to the sheet pan. Place in oven ten minutes to sear the outsides.
In a large heavy pot, heat up one tablespoon of oil. Sauté the leeks over low heat until well rendered, 15-20 minutes. Deglaze with white wine. Add the tomato and vinegar, reduce by half. Add the stock, again cook until reduced by half. Add the coriander, chili flake, and salt and pepper to taste.
In a Pyrex dish or other pan with sides, arrange the meatballs and cover with the sauce. Braise 15-20 minutes until meatballs are cooked through.
Serve a la carte topped with olive oil, breadcrumb, and cheese… Or add to pasta!
The new Nick’s Cove just celebrated our one year anniversary under new ownership. We are all amazed at how quickly the year went blazing by. We have been to six very different and cool events from SF Chefs to Cocktail Week and the awesome KJ Heirloom Festival, had three weddings, oodles of private dining events, visited but not necessarily reviewed, by the SF Food King himself, Mr. Michael Bauer, hosted a Yelp Elite Event, answered hundreds of yelpers from good to bad and everywhere in between, had 52 very successful, well attended Locals’ Nights, had a small power outage, dealt with AT&T phone lines going down multiple times, launched a beautiful new website, made appearances on national television (thank you Jan Wahl), and served Lady Gaga! We have enjoyed the most beautiful sunsets and the foggiest of mornings. We truly work in one of the most spectacular locations in California!
At the end of the day, we have our customers to thank for this amazing year of prosperity. We are here, ready and waiting to welcome you back or for the very first time.