The Gables at Chadds Ford Restaurant, Bar and Private Parties 2018-07-09T20:00:23Z http://thegablesatchaddsford.com/feed/atom/ gableseditor <![CDATA[Your Garden Needs These 5 Veggies]]> http://thegablesatchaddsford.com/?p=8571 2018-07-02T16:08:01Z 2018-07-02T16:08:01Z There are so many tempting veggies to grow in our area! Executive Chef Jose Castillo lets us in on his top five favorites. Soon, they'll be your top five, too.

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There’s nothing quite like biting into fresh veggies harvested from your own backyard. They have a comforting, earthy smell when first picked, and an unmistakably honest flavor and cornucopia of health benefits when consumed.

Luckily for us, The Gables at Chadds Ford’s executive chef, Jose Castillo, digs gardening, a skill he learned from his father. The peppers, tomatoes, kale, lettuces, basil and parsley — and more, depending on the chef’s whim when planting — that you see on your plate have traveled a short distance from our rooftop garden to our kitchen.

With so many tempting veggies available to grow in our area (we’re in Pennsylvania zone 7), it can be challenging to choose, especially if you’re a beginner. Here are the top five veggies Jose likes to grow (technically, tomatoes and peppers are fruits, and basil is an herb, but you get the idea!):

1. Beefsteak Tomatoes

These hearty, almost “meaty” tomatoes are great for slicing to top burgers and sandwiches, but also work well in salads.

2. Hot Peppers

Jalapeno is a great starter hot pepper, as it’s easy to grow and not wicked hot. Use them to add zip to your dishes (we love them in Mexican fare) and cocktails.

3. Mesclun Mix

You’ll love this mix of tender, mild light green and red baby lettuces. You’ll also love saving money by growing your own, rather than buying boxed or bagged salads.

4. Basil

Go for Italian basil — it’s the most popular and versatile. Aromatic and slightly sweet, basil is the perfect partner to tomatoes and adds flavor to salads, soups, sauces and even sandwiches (try it with mozzarella, tomato and a drizzle of olive oil on a rustic roll).

5. Sugar Snap Peas

Munch ‘em raw as a snack (with or without a light ranch salad dressing) and add them to salads for a refreshing crunch and fresh-picked flavor. You can also blanch sugar snap peas for a quick and healthy side dish.

Many home gardeners start plants from seeds, nurture into them seedlings and then plant them outside. In most cases, seedlings go into the ground not long after the last frost, which generally happens in mid- to late-April. A good rule of thumb for our area is to get into the garden around Mother’s Day.

Did you miss this year’s suggested growing season? You may still be able to cultivate these beauties from seedlings and plant in containers. Or, consider their sister plants that can stand up to colder weather. Pro tip: Try “putting up” your homegrown veggies for the winter.

Don’t feel like cooking? Come visit and let our chef fill your plate with garden-to-table goodness! Bonus: From late spring into the fall, take advantage of our alfresco options, including our fire pit patio and our covered outdoor patio. See you soon!

The Gables at Chadds Ford is nestled in the heart of the historic Brandywine Valley. Our combination of fresh seasonal cuisine, rustic yet elegant charm and enchanting outdoor dining will keep you coming back time and time again. The Gables is also the perfect venue to host your next special event, whether you are planning a wedding, rehearsal dinner, baby shower or corporate event.

Nina Malone

Featured photo: Betsy Barron Photography; all other photos, top to bottom: Ed Williams; Pixabay; Bigstock; Ed Williams (last two photos)

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gableseditor <![CDATA[BIG NEWS: Gables Beer Garden Coming July 2018]]> http://thegablesatchaddsford.com/?p=8533 2018-07-09T20:00:23Z 2018-06-18T18:10:27Z Ice-cold beer. Good eats. Summer tunes. Outdoorsy games. Sound good? Then mark your calendar for every Thursday in July — plus a few other dates in July and August — and head to the pop-up beer garden at The Gables at Chadds Ford.

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Ice-cold beer. Good eats. Summer tunes. Outdoorsy games. Sound good? Then mark your calendar for every Thursday in July — plus a few other dates in July and August — and head to the pop-up beer garden at The Gables at Chadds Ford.

News flash for Mother Nature: The gig is on, rain or shine, from 5 to 10 p.m. If she’s drenching us, then we’ll transform our banquet room into the beer garden. When she’s smiling on us, the beer garden will take over the back terrace. Expect our signature service as you indulge in:

  • Four beers on tap, in addition to a generous can and bottle selection. Want to hang out, but not into beer? Choose from our wine list or indulge in our freshly made Summer Berry Peach Sangria.
  • Some new dishes and some Gables favorites! If you’re really hungry, try the Boubon Pulled Pork Sandwich or Italian Sausage Sandwich. For something lighter, order a Gables Salad or Watermelon Salad.
  • A s’mores bar that will tempt with a variety of homemade flavored marshmallows.

Your ears will think “cheers,” too, thanks to a fun lineup of music. Here’s who’s in right now, but keep an eye on our Facebook event page and stay in the know:

In addition to the above dates, we’ll also be raising pints in the beer garden on Saturday, Aug. 11.

Between sips and nibbles, make sure to stroll on over to the lawn games and try your luck at cornhole and giant Jenga. And if the weather is sublime but you’re still a tad warm, the banquet room will be open so you can chill in air-conditioned comfort.

Bonus: On July 12, 20, 26 and Aug. 3, you can memorialize your beer garden shenanigans with the Tiny Tin Photo Booth! It’s a retro camper-turned-photo-booth on wheels. Pop in with your squad, make silly faces at the camera (or not) and leave with a strip of photos.

Feel like an alfresco experience but can’t swing by on any of those dates? Pop in and check out our fire pit patio for a similar vibe.

The Gables at Chadds Ford is nestled in the heart of the historic Brandywine Valley. Our combination of fresh seasonal cuisine, rustic yet elegant charm and enchanting outdoor dining will keep you coming back time and time again. The Gables is also the perfect venue to host your next special event, whether you are planning a wedding, rehearsal dinner, baby shower or corporate event.

Nina Malone

Photos: Bigstock

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gableseditor <![CDATA[It’s Finally Time for Alfresco Fun!]]> http://thegablesatchaddsford.com/?p=8469 2018-05-31T17:33:28Z 2018-05-31T17:33:28Z When the weather outside is delightful, think alfresco fun! Set your sights on a place with open and covered patios and happy hour specials, plus bar and full menu options. How about The Gables at Chadds Ford?

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When the weather outside is delightful, think alfresco fun! Set your sights on a place with open and covered patios and happy hour specials, plus bar and full menu options. How about The Gables at Chadds Ford?

We’re pumped for warm weather and suspect you are, too. We’d love for you to be our alfresco guest and bring along family, friends and work colleagues. Here’s why!

Alfresco Fun, Rain or Shine

Rain in the forecast? No problem — settle in on our covered outdoor patio. Our sturdy greenhouse tent is dotted with clear ceiling panels for natural light by day, or choose a shady spot. Here you, can indulge in our full lunchdinner and brunch menus. Choose something light and summery, such as our Gables Salad topped with apples and pears or our Pick Two for $10 (half-portions of seasonal salads, soups and/or sandwiches) for lunch. Go big with our signature shrimp and grits, jumbo lump crab cake or center cut filet mignon for dinner. And just wait until you see our brunch buffet, packed with salads, cheese and fruit, an omelet station, French toast and more (a la carte specialties are also available). Brunch is served Sunday from 10:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.

Get Happy by the Fire Pit

It should be called happy hours because it runs from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m., Tuesday through Friday, and because our tempting menus will bring a smile to your face. Our happy hour menu boasts $5 glasses of our award-winning sangria, $2 off all draught beer and $3 off all glasses of wine, plus daily discounts on select menu items from loaded pimento crab and artichoke dip and truffle fries to shrimp cocktail martinis and cheesesteak egg rolls — and more.

Our bar menu is available on the fire pit patio anytime. It’s a sampling of our favorites, including the Gables Burger piled high with smoked bacon, fried onions, arugula and white cheddar; balsamic brussels sprouts lightly fried and topped with shaved Asagio; grilled romaine salad with garlic croutons and roasted piquillo peppers; beer mussels doused in lager, sliced onion, garlic bacon, blue cheese crumbles and fresh parsley and so much more!

Next-Level Lunch Meetings

The great outdoors isn’t just for R&R. Our outdoor options are an excellent way to make an impression on your business colleagues. We put the power in power lunch — just let us know you’re there for business when you arrive (or make a reservation) and we’ll make sure you have a quiet table for your business connection.

Hungry for more? Then make a plan to swing by The Gables at Chadds Ford to savor the great outdoors — and our food and drink!

The Gables at Chadds Ford is nestled in the heart of the historic Brandywine Valley. Our combination of fresh seasonal cuisine, rustic yet elegant charm and enchanting outdoor dining will keep you coming back time and time again. The Gables is also the perfect venue to host your next special event, whether you are planning a wedding, rehearsal dinner, baby shower or corporate event.

Nina Malone

Featured photo: Dara N. King Photography; other photos, top to bottom: Fig; Dara N. King Photography; Fig (remaining photos)

 

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gableseditor <![CDATA[Wedding Day Pampering 101: The Wedding Suite!]]> http://thegablesatchaddsford.com/?p=8431 2018-06-20T14:57:21Z 2018-05-22T17:19:00Z It’s finally here: Your wedding day! All that planning is about to pay off with the wedding of your dreams. Now you’re ready for your day to start with stress-free pampering. Your day is about to start that way, right? Couples who choose The Gables at Chadds Ford know that their day will start with one-stop wedding prep, a toast and tempting nibbles. That’s ...

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It’s finally here: Your wedding day! All that planning is about to pay off with the wedding of your dreams. Now you’re ready for your day to start with stress-free pampering.

Your day is about to start that way, right?

Couples who choose The Gables at Chadds Ford know that their day will start with one-stop wedding prep, a toast and tempting nibbles. That’s because they’ll take advantage of our wedding suite, which is included with every wedding package. Our wedding suite is a charming spot nestled in a separate building next to the wedding terrace and the barn reception area. Let’s take a tour!

Inside, you’ll find two quaint rooms tastefully appointed in cheery pastels and love-inspired accents. One boasts a full-length mirror, plenty of space to hand (and photograph!) wedding attire and ample room for changing. The other affords comfy couches for relaxing and snacking, plus a great spot for hair and makeup. Of course, there’s also a private bathroom.

This on-premises ready room lets our brides and grooms do all the important pre-wedding primping just steps from the ceremony and reception areas. No running from the hairdresser to the makeup artist to somewhere else for photos and then to the wedding (which also may mean less time spent in the limo, too!). It not only saves time and money, but also cuts back on the stress of running around and worrying about being on time for everything.

You know what also cuts back on stress? Making sure your stomach isn’t empty (though we can’t account for butterflies!) before the ceremony. We provide complimentary cheese, fruit, crackers, sparkling and still water and a bottle of champagne. Your first toast is on us!

Like our beautifully landscaped property, the wedding suite is a photographer’s dream, and that means more memorable photos of your day. Your photographer will capture the day from the first dab of makeup to the escorted walk to the ceremony.

And while you may or may not want select guests to pop in before the ceremony, you have the option to welcome them into the wedding suite, since it’s adjacent to where you may choose to have the cocktail hour.

 

At The Gables, our event planners work hard for you from the very first meeting through the final wave goodbye. Our wedding suite is just another way we serve our wedding parties. Ready to learn more? Contact our events team at (610) 388-7700 or by email.

The Gables at Chadds Ford is nestled in the heart of the historic Brandywine Valley. Our combination of fresh seasonal cuisine, rustic yet elegant charm and enchanting outdoor dining will keep you coming back time and time again. The Gables is also the perfect venue to host your next special event, whether you are planning a wedding, rehearsal dinner, baby shower or corporate event.

Nina Malone

Featured photo: The Gables at Chadds Ford; other photos, top to bottom: Clair Pruett Photography; The Gables at Chadds Ford (next two photos); First Impression Photography; Memory Keeper Photography (next two photos); Megan Lloyd Photography; First Impression Photography

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gableseditor <![CDATA[We Mean Business for Your Business]]> http://thegablesatchaddsford.com/?p=8295 2018-05-04T17:11:35Z 2018-05-04T11:45:41Z Do the words “business meeting” conjure up images of a bright and comfortable room, gourmet food and outdoor breaks? And if you’re a meeting or an event planner, did those words also make you think of one-stop shopping with virtually no setup or cleanup? If your answer to either question was “No,” then it’s time that you give our event planners a ...

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Do the words “business meeting” conjure up images of a bright and comfortable room, gourmet food and outdoor breaks? And if you’re a meeting or an event planner, did those words also make you think of one-stop shopping with virtually no setup or cleanup? If your answer to either question was “No,” then it’s time that you give our event planners a call for your next gathering.

At The Gables at Chadds Ford, we not only know how to host, but how to make it convenient for our business hosts. Our spacious venue is perfect for weekly or monthly meetings, retreats, board or annual meetings … you name it, we’ve hosted it.

Our job is to make events easy for you and delight your guests. Our experienced event planners are with you every step of the way and pride themselves on superior service throughout the entire process. Expect quick replies to all of your questions and the “extra mile” from our event pros.

We also know that time is money, so let’s jump in with the must-have amenities that come with our banquet room rental:

  • Access to the terrace, including fire pits and hand-made Adirondack chairs, for fresh air breaks or break-out sessions. (Fun fact: Owner Ann Kolenick’s father made those chairs!)
  • Convenient and reasonably priced on-site equipment rentals, including a 72-inch projection screen, high-definition (HDMI-compatible) projector, a lavalier microphone and speaker and a sound system and speakers that work with your iPod, iPad, iPhone or other compatible device. We set it up and tear it down so you don’t have to!
  • Tried-and-true trusted vendors for additional services you may require such as photography, videography, flowers and more.
  • Award-winning cuisine from our talented kitchen staff, with customizable packages for every business occasion.

Unforgettable Food

Let’s dig into the menu — because memorable meeting meals will set your event apart from the rest. We’ll wow your team whether you choose a buffet, food stations or a plated meal. Breakfast, brunch, lunch sandwiches and salads, lunch and dinner entrees, a variety of sides and desserts are made just steps away in our kitchen and served to your guests with the same attention to detail, quality and service you’d expect from The Gables. Hosting a more formal meeting? Consider passed or stationed hors d’oeuvres for that special touch.

Here’s more to whet your appetite:

  • Petite Maryland crab cakes with whole grain mustard aioli.
  • Grown-up grilled cheese with truffle tomato aioli.
  • Slow-braised pork empanadas with sweet and tangy barbecue sauce.
  • An eggs benedict station with a choice of Canadian bacon, seared beef tenderloin, roasted Kennett mushrooms, fresh asparagus and Hollandaise sauce.
  • A shrimp and grits station with tender Gulf shrimp served over Southern-style grits with a choice of applewood bacon, cherry tomatoes, mushrooms, arugula, swiss or cheddar.
  • Ann’s homemade chocolate espresso cake.
  • S’mores station.
  • Vegetarian entrees, too. (And ask about accommodations for special dietary needs.)

Hungry yet?

We also have flexible bar packages that you can add on for celebratory events, happy hours or just because. Choose from a full or beer and wine only bar, and consider premium options, too. One- and two-hour bar packages are available, or maybe you’d like an open bar for longer events. Our daytime bartender rates are amazingly reasonable, too: $100 per bartender.

Reasonable Room Rates

Some of the best news for your budget are our rates for weekday room rentals — as low as $100 for four daytime hours Monday through Friday, and $150 for five evening hours Monday through Thursday. All room rentals include standard white table linens, napkins, china, glassware, flatware, tealight candles, use of our outdoor terrace and room setup and cleanup.

Ready to get started? Contact our events team at (610) 388-7700 or by email.

The Gables at Chadds Ford is nestled in the heart of the historic Brandywine Valley. Our combination of fresh seasonal cuisine, rustic yet elegant charm and enchanting outdoor dining will keep you coming back time and time again. The Gables is also the perfect venue to host your next special event, whether you are planning a wedding, rehearsal dinner, baby shower or corporate event.

Nina Malone

Featured photo: Pexels; other photos, top to bottom: Southern County Chamber of Commerce; Sandrien B Photography; The Gables at Chadds Ford; Sandrien B Photography

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gableseditor <![CDATA[A Fairy Tale Wedding: Colleen and Chris Patterson]]> http://thegablesatchaddsford.com/?p=8263 2018-04-24T12:46:32Z 2018-04-24T12:46:32Z Technology had a big hand in Colleen and Chris Patterson’s happily ever after, thanks to MySpace and some creative Googling. Yes, MySpace. In 2007, Chris found Colleen Campbell’s MySpace profile and messaged her. Colleen had just finished grad school and was new to Chris’ hometown of Salisbury, Md. She almost ignored the message, then figured she was looking for friends in her ...

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Technology had a big hand in Colleen and Chris Patterson’s happily ever after, thanks to MySpace and some creative Googling.

Yes, MySpace.

In 2007, Chris found Colleen Campbell’s MySpace profile and messaged her. Colleen had just finished grad school and was new to Chris’ hometown of Salisbury, Md. She almost ignored the message, then figured she was looking for friends in her new area and thought he seemed interesting.

“We went on our first date … and that was it,” Colleen recalled. “Well, to be fair, we had a great time, had dinner, hung out after and I felt really comfortable with him. But he was kind of keeping his distance, so I thought, ‘well, at least he’ll be a good friend.’”

As fate would have it, Chris called the next day. Turns out he was just being a gentleman and taking it slowly. From that point on, that was definitely “it.” Dating morphed into living together, and eventually led to a proposal. Colleen was sure “the day” was coming when she decided she really wanted to move back home to New Jersey — and Chris decided he’d be coming along.

The surprise proposal happened during a vacation to New York’s Finger Lakes. Although Colleen was usually the vacation planner, this time Chris stepped in and handled it all.

“He found a house on a lake — it was just gorgeous!” Colleen said. “The first night, after dinner, we came back to hang out on the beautiful deck overlooking the lake. Chris said he had a surprise, and he brought out a new version of a t-shirt I’d ruined long ago. I loved the gesture, but then he said he had another surprise, and got down on one knee!”

Colleen says she’s a very emotional person, so she started crying, so much so that she asked him to repeat his proposal because she’d missed some of it! That was the start of a magical vacation and their new life together.

Colleen, 36, a speech pathologist specializing in early intervention and providing services in clients’ homes, and Chris, 37 a parts and service representative for a generator company, currently call Washington Township, N.J., home. How, then, did they find The Gables at Chadds Ford for their dream wedding?

That’s where the creative Googling stepped in. Both Colleen and her mom were searching Bucks County for rustic wedding venues, but no matter what search words they used, Delaware County’s own The Gables at Chadds Ford kept popping up. It was the first venue the couple visited.

“We met with Sam Westenberger and were blown away when we saw the barn and the outdoor area out back,” Colleen explained. “We loved the bridal suite, the bar, the reception area and that it fit into our budget.”

“From the outside, you can’t really see everything The Gables offers,” Chris added. “You walk inside, and it’s, like, ‘Wow!’ We visited a few other places because we’d made appointments, but after seeing The Gables, every other place was just meh. Nothing compared.”

The couple also was taken with the fact that nearly everything could be done on-site, from getting ready in the bridal suite while sipping on champagne and nibbling on cheese and fruit to the ceremony and leading right into the reception.

“It was a really relaxing day because we didn’t have to drive around to different places for things like hair, makeup and the rest of getting ready,” Colleen said.

The Pattersons also took advantage of our preferred vendor list, using Wooden Arrow Paperie for save-the-date cards and invitations, Fresh Designs Florist for flowers and The Master’s Baker for the cake. Colleen was also delighted to work with our team and rent decor rather than having to buy it.

“We loved the look and feel of The Gables; it’s rustic, simple and elegant, so we didn’t have to add a lot of decorations,” Chris added. “We liked working with everyone there, but especially Sam as our go-to person. She was with us from the first visit through the tastings to the end. She’s friendly, always smiling and answered all questions with a quick email response.”

Our outdoor space was a big draw for the Pattersons. The couple was married outside, and since it was a beautiful fall day, many guests lingered out back to enjoy the cool weather among the fire pits.

“We can’t forget the food!” Colleen said. “We ordered everything from our tasting: French chicken breast, filet mignon and salmon; they were all amazing. We had a pasta station and butlered hors d’oeuvres like crab-stuffed mushrooms, bacon-wrapped shrimp and our favorite, the grown-up grilled cheese. It was great that we could customize. The best part? Our guests let us know how much they enjoyed the food.”

What started as a flirtatious MySpace message ended with a dream wedding on Oct. 13, 2017. We’re grateful the Pattersons found us online, and even more delighted they visited and chose to start their life together with us.

Ready to get started? Contact our events team at (610) 388-7100 or by email, and remember to ask about holding a wedding within two months of booking. (Insider’s tip: There’s a deal for that!)

The Gables at Chadds Ford is nestled in the heart of the historic Brandywine Valley. Our combination of fresh seasonal cuisine, rustic yet elegant charm and enchanting outdoor dining will keep you coming back time and time again. The Gables is also the perfect venue to host your next special event, whether you are planning a wedding, rehearsal dinner, baby shower or corporate event.

Nina Malone

Featured image: First Impression Photography; other photos, top to bottom: Chris Patterson; First Impression Photography (all other photos)

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gableseditor <![CDATA[Try This: Our Chef’s Spring Scallops Recipe]]> http://thegablesatchaddsford.com/?p=8200 2018-03-30T15:20:17Z 2018-03-30T15:20:17Z The slow freeze of winter is melting away — what better way to ease into spring than with a simple recipe that honors both cold weather favorites and fresh flavors? Dive into one of our chef’s favorite scallop recipes! They sit atop a flavorful mash dressed with the bright flavors of honey and lemon and drizzled with a just-right sweet reduction. ...

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The slow freeze of winter is melting away — what better way to ease into spring than with a simple recipe that honors both cold weather favorites and fresh flavors?

Dive into one of our chef’s favorite scallop recipes! They sit atop a flavorful mash dressed with the bright flavors of honey and lemon and drizzled with a just-right sweet reduction. Eat up!

Pan-Seared Scallops Over Saffron Parsnip Mash, Mache Pomegranate Salad with Honey Lemon Dressing and Blood Orange Reduction

Serves 4

Saffron Potato and Parsnip Mash

Ingredients:

  • 2 pounds russet potatoes, scrubbed, peeled and diced
  • 1 pound parsnips, scrubbed, peeled and diced
  • Saffron threads, pinch
  • 3/4 cup milk
  • 1/4 cup melted butter
  • Kosher salt and pepper, to taste

Method

  1. Dice potatoes and parsnips to 1-inch pieces; add to pot with enough water to cover and simmer until soft. Meanwhile, steep saffron in 2 tablespoons hot water.
  2. After potatoes and parsnips are fork tender, turn off heat, drain and return to pot for about a minute to dry excess moisture.
  3. Gently heat milk to a simmer, about 2 to 3 minutes. Whisk in melted butter and saffron water.
  4. Pour liquid over the cooked potatoes and parsnips. Using a potato masher, mash everything together until smooth.
  5. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Honey Lemon Dressing

Ingredients:

  • 3 tablespoons honey
  • 2 lemons, both zest and juice
  • 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • Salt and pepper, to taste

Method

  1. In small mixing bowl, add honey, lemon zest and juice and mustard; whisk together.
  2. Slowly add the oil in a steady stream; whisk constantly until smooth.
  3. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Scallops:

Ingredients:

  • 12 U-10 scallops
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 2–3 tablespoons olive oil

Method

  1. Pat scallops dry and season with salt and pepper.
  2. Heat 12-inch saute pan on medium high heat; add 2 to 3 tablespoons olive oil.
  3. Just when the pan starts to smoke, gently add the scallops, making sure they are not touching each other.
  4. Sear for 1 1/2 minutes on each side.

Blood Orange Reduction

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups fresh blood orange juice
  • 6 tablespoons sugar

Method

  1. Stir juice and sugar in heavy medium saucepan over medium high heat until sugar is dissolved.
  2. Simmer for approximately 20 minutes until sauce is reduced by half and has thickened.
  3. Cool before use.

 

Serving instructions (note: Purchase mache lettuce and pomegranate seeds at any quality grocery store):

  1. Spoon 3/4 cup of the mash and top with three scallops.
  2. Garnish with mache and pomegranate seeds.
  3. Dress the salad with honey lemon dressing and finish garnishing the plate with the blood orange reduction.

The Gables at Chadds Ford is nestled in the heart of the historic Brandywine Valley. Our combination of fresh seasonal cuisine, rustic yet elegant charm and enchanting outdoor dining will keep you coming back time and time again. The Gables is also the perfect venue to host your next special event, whether you are planning a wedding, rehearsal dinner, baby shower or corporate event.

Nina Malone

Photos: The Gables at Chadds Ford

The post Try This: Our Chef’s Spring Scallops Recipe appeared first on The Gables at Chadds Ford.

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gableseditor <![CDATA[Wedding Receptions Made Easy: Find Out How With These 6 Tips]]> http://thegablesatchaddsford.com/?p=8170 2018-04-16T21:29:47Z 2018-03-21T15:46:51Z Wedding planning? Easy? Is it possible? Yes, it is! When you have the right help from the start, planning your reception can be low-stress and enjoyable for everyone involved … especially the happy couple! Sound like a fairy tale? It’s not, and even better, it doesn’t have to cost a fortune. In fact, a great venue will offer wedding planning services as ...

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Wedding planning? Easy? Is it possible? Yes, it is! When you have the right help from the start, planning your reception can be low-stress and enjoyable for everyone involved … especially the happy couple!

Sound like a fairy tale? It’s not, and even better, it doesn’t have to cost a fortune. In fact, a great venue will offer wedding planning services as part of what it does to make your day magical. Look for these features and benefits when you’re deciding where to hold your special day.

1. Help From Start to Finish

The venue should offer a complimentary tour of the grounds with an events team member. That way, a resident expert is there to answer all of your questions on the spot. Once you book the venue, you should know that an events team member will be available to you from the moment you sign the contract until you wave goodbye at the end of the reception.

“Kelly and I are here from the day the couple takes their tour through to the reception,” said The Gables at Chadds Ford’s banquet manager, Samantha Westenberger, of her and event coordinator and general manager Kelly Donahue’s involvement as event planning experts. “We’re here to help in any way and relieve any stress with coordination, tips and advice.”

2. Ability to Accommodate Your Budget for Your Dream Menu

A solid wedding venue will provide set menu packages, but will also work with you to design the ideal dining experience for your taste preferences, dietary needs and concerns, and budget. There should be flexibility and open communication to ensure you and your guests will be delighted without breaking the bank.

“We’re always happy to help stay within a budget,” Kelly said. “We can even go so far as to create financials based on what the couple is thinking about. If we need to work with them to find ways to tweak the financials to bring the cost down, then we’re happy to make recommendations. Our chef is great at coming up with different and delicious options!”

3. Special Touches Included in the Total Cost

Bring a checklist to your tour to make sure you’re not being nickeled-and-dimed for things as simple as linens and place settings. Here’s what The Gables includes as part of the very reasonable room fee (ask about weekday discounts!):

  • White, floor-length table linens and napkins.
  • Tables set with china, flatware, glassware and white tealight candles to compliment your centerpiece arrangements.
  • Use of outdoor terrace space.
  • Room setup and cleanup.
  • Our wedding suite dressing room with complimentary light refreshments is available for the guest of honor along with his or her attendants for ceremonies held on the grounds. You are welcome to arrive as early as six hours before your ceremony’s start time.
  • A complimentary gift card will be given to the couple for a one-year anniversary dinner at The Gables at Chadds Ford.

Upgrades are always available, but those should be your choice, not something that’s hidden in the contract.

4. Pros at Decorations

A venue with an aesthetic and ambiance that speaks to you is key. But you’re going to want to make the space your own with decorations, and the events team should not only be accepting of that, but prepared and willing to help.

“We have what we call our ‘decor department,’” Samantha added. “They’re here to help style the reception and handle setup. The couple drops off their decorations the night before, and when they arrive the next day, it’s all in place — no worries! Naturally, we take care of the cleanup, too.”

Not into decor or need an assist? At The Gables, we are ready to jump in — plus, The Gables has rental decor. We start by meeting with the couple to get ideas and wishes, and then offer different ideas and options. Talk about no stress!

5. Access to Trusted Vendors

Although a good venue will include many amenities in the package, there are some vendors you’ll need to hire, such as a photographer, videographer, florist, etc. The venue should have no trouble directing you to trusted vendors.

“We have some really great relationships with different vendors thanks to our many years in the business,” Kelly noted. “We provide every couple with a list of preferred vendors, but we’re not exclusive, so couples are able to work with whomever they want to as long as the vendor has liability insurance. We’re really flexible!”

6. Bottom Line: Look for a One-Stop Shop

At The Gables, we like to make everything as simple and as stress-free as possible. We start with the tour, then coordinate the event from start to finish. We keep an eye on your budget and include many items other venues may charge to provide. We have professional decorating assistance, including decor rentals. And we have recommended vendors we know will do a great job. All you need to do? Show up and enjoy.

Did you know The Gables has a booking incentive? Book a date that’s only two months away and receive 75 percent off one passed or stationed hors d’oeuvre, 25 percent off an 8’ x 8’ Nicol Floral Designs silk flower wall or a complimentary champagne toast. Get all the details, check for your preferred date and book today.

The Gables at Chadds Ford is nestled in the heart of the historic Brandywine Valley. Our combination of fresh seasonal cuisine, rustic yet elegant charm and enchanting outdoor dining will keep you coming back time and time again. The Gables is also the perfect venue to host your next special event, whether you are planning a wedding, rehearsal dinner, baby shower or corporate event.

Nina Malone

Photos, top to bottom: Alexandra Whitney; Clair Pruett Photography; The Gables at Chadds Ford

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gableseditor <![CDATA[Why Wood-Fired Food Tastes Best (Give it a Try!)]]> http://thegablesatchaddsford.com/?p=8139 2018-03-14T11:49:35Z 2018-03-14T11:49:35Z It’s not barbecue and it’s not smoking … it’s something in between, and it’s magical! We’re talking about wood-firing food and how it imparts irresistibly unique, roasty flavors and depth to meat, poultry, fish and vegetables. “Chefs prefer wood-fired grills over gas because you get better flavor,” said The Gables at Chadds Ford executive chef Jose Castillo. “The smoke from the wood penetrates ...

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It’s not barbecue and it’s not smoking … it’s something in between, and it’s magical! We’re talking about wood-firing food and how it imparts irresistibly unique, roasty flavors and depth to meat, poultry, fish and vegetables.

“Chefs prefer wood-fired grills over gas because you get better flavor,” said The Gables at Chadds Ford executive chef Jose Castillo. “The smoke from the wood penetrates while the food is cooking for nuanced flavors. Even though we use modern cooking techniques at The Gables, having a wood-fired grill is the more Southern-style of grilling that we love.”

Not only does wood-firing’s subtly smoky hints meld perfectly with The Gables’ Southern-inspired cuisine, but it also hearkens back to roots in Spain and South America, where it was used as a rustic way to roast and braise, too.

“Cooking over an open flame goes back the cave man, man and fire,” Jose added. “The Argentinians and Brazilians got it right — gaucho cooking is simple, and the basis of hearty meals.”

Bonus: Wood-firing is more than just delicious — it’s also a healthier way to cook. Fat drippings drop into the grill so the food doesn’t “sit” in them. Vegetables cook quickly to retain more nutrients and bigger flavors as the flame caramelizes them to create a slight sweetness along with the smokiness. And using high heat and a live flame gives a beautiful sear on steaks and other proteins while the inside remains tender and juicy.

“We wood-fire grill our steaks, beef and turkey burgers, and chicken and vegetable paninis; plus the romaine, asparagus, salmon and shrimp that go on our salads,” Jose noted.

And what does chef Jose reach for when he’s in the mood for wood-fired nibbles? Grilled asparagus and grilled shrimp for a light, healthy and tasty repast.

Curious? Hungry? Join us for lunchdinner, Sunday brunch or at the bar — check out our happy hour, too. Our wood-fired specialties pair beautifully with selections from our extensive winereserve wine and beer lists, any number of our signature cocktails and martinis and our bourbons and single malt scotches (pro tip: try a flight). Our friendly servers and bartenders are always happy to make recommendations.

The Gables at Chadds Ford is nestled in the heart of the historic Brandywine Valley. Our combination of fresh seasonal cuisine, rustic yet elegant charm and enchanting outdoor dining will keep you coming back time and time again. The Gables is also the perfect venue to host your next special event, whether you are planning a wedding, rehearsal dinner, baby shower or corporate event.

Nina Malone

Photos: The Gables at Chadds Ford

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gableseditor <![CDATA[Meet the Team: Executive Chef Jose Castillo]]> http://thegablesatchaddsford.com/?p=8058 2018-02-20T13:55:15Z 2018-02-20T13:55:15Z When Jose Castillo was a young boy in Mexico, he’d spend time in the kitchen watching his mom prepare food for him and his seven siblings on a limited budget and with limited supplies. He marveled at how his mom created satisfying and delicious meals, and that image filled his soul as well as his stomach. Now The Gables at Chadds ...

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When Jose Castillo was a young boy in Mexico, he’d spend time in the kitchen watching his mom prepare food for him and his seven siblings on a limited budget and with limited supplies. He marveled at how his mom created satisfying and delicious meals, and that image filled his soul as well as his stomach.

Now The Gables at Chadds Ford’s executive chef, Jose hearkens back to when he came to the United States at age nine. His dad had been living and working here so that, one by one, he could bring the entire family to America. He worked fields, did landscaping and toiled in Toughkenamon’s mushroom houses. Back in Mexico, his mom opened a little food stand outside their house. Jose’s siblings helped prep food — including handmade tortillas — while Jose delivered the takeout orders. These are lessons in hard work that Jose will never forget, lessons that fuel his lifelong pursuit of excellence.

“I think of my parents, and how they worked and sacrificed — a lot — so I could have the opportunity to pursue what I wanted to do,” Jose said. “I’m so grateful, and because of them, I keep pushing myself to go further and further. Both my parents worked hard to give us a better life.”

Jose has come far since his culinary school days at YTI Career Institute. He worked nights at the Mendenhall Inn after being in school all day. He started there as a banquet server, then moved into the kitchen to help with banquet prep. He began to move through the ranks with stints at Kennett Steak and Mushroom Restaurant, going from sauté to kitchen supervisor and producing the daily specials. His catering experience came in handy at Aramark at Widener University School of Law; Winterthur Museum, Garden and Library and Longwood Gardens.

“A great chef once told me, ‘Don’t ask for a raise; ask for responsibility,’” Jose noted. Clearly, he took that advice to heart.

Jose’s responsibilities continued to grow as sous chef at St. Joseph’s University, where he managed the kitchen staff for residential dining and catering. He then became chef manager at the University of Delaware’s Goodstay Center, overseeing a conference center, the cafe and large events.

As luck would have it (for us!), Jose started with us part-time on weekends. The rest is Gables history.

“Working at those other venues helped me learn a lot about time management, sanitation, food cost, portion control and the other crucial things that make a restaurant run well,” Jose said. “What our customers will see is that I’m upholding The Gables’ good name for quality and professionalism while putting my own spin on the menu.”

One of Jose’s passions is gardening, which he learned from his father. Fans of our rooftop garden’s fresh produce will be delighted to know that Jose will bring those talents to bear because “fresher is better.” In his precious little spare time, he also enjoys landscaping and hanging out with his dog, Chewie (as in Star Wars’ Chewbacca, not a chew toy!). During warm weather, he also likes to tend to his koi pond.

“It’s something to come home to after a long, busy day,” he explained. “Grab a Captain and ginger, sit by the pond and relax.”

You’ll also find Jose cooking at home, of course! He likes to keep it simple, going back to his Mexican roots but adding a twist.

“I like to mix in a little Mexican with Spanish and Italian,” he said. “So I might make Spanish meatballs, finish them with marinara and top it all with Cotija cheese.”

His favorite Gables menu item? The 12-ounce, dry-aged New York strip steak.

“The flavor is more intense, but the meat is very tender,” he explained. “We butcher it in-house and it’s dry aged for 28 days. Perfect!”

Although Jose’s journey to executive chef began in his mother’s kitchen, he’s grateful to The Gables for the opportunities in our kitchen.

“I must give thanks to owner Ann Kolenick for giving me the opportunity to share and practice my craft at her restaurant,” he said.

We welcome you to come visit soon and savor new twists on Gables classics — thanks to executive chef Jose!

The Gables at Chadds Ford is nestled in the heart of the historic Brandywine Valley. Our combination of fresh seasonal cuisine, rustic yet elegant charm and enchanting outdoor dining will keep you coming back time and time again. The Gables is also the perfect venue to host your next special event, whether you are planning a wedding, rehearsal dinner, baby shower or corporate event.

Nina Malone

Photos: The Gables at Chadds Ford

The post Meet the Team: Executive Chef Jose Castillo appeared first on The Gables at Chadds Ford.

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