Jordan Estate Tales - Volume 8 - 2013 - 16

“Each menu is a snapshot of that day in Sonoma right on
your plate,” Knoll says. “It’s cooking for the moment with
the freshest ingredients possible, and that meal, that moment,
can’t be duplicated.”
Then he hits the drawing board—literally—and sketches out
how he envisions each dish should look. A single herb, vegetable
or fruit, freshly harvested from the Jordan garden, serves as the
“inspiration” ingredient for each course. According to Chef
Knoll, the sketches serve a variety of purposes.
“Not only does the process of sketching help me think through
each dish and how it’s going to be plated, but the drawing itself
lets you see exactly where certain components of the dish will
end up on the plate,” he says. “Ultimately this sketch is what all
of the other cooks will be looking at to make sure they’ve got the
dish right.”
With the sketches in hand, Chef Knoll sets out to recruit
his proteins. A recent meal that featured soft-shell crab, for
instance, required him to order a bushel from Baltimore,
Maryland. When he works with poultry, he sources from one
of his local purveyors.
Because Chef Knoll loves to highlight the aromatics and flavors
of ingredients, he often cooks sous vide, a modernist culinary
technique of cooking food in vacuum-sealed pouches at precise
temperatures, which requires advance preparation of certain
fruits and vegetables. Root vegetables are often pre-cut and
seasoned the afternoon before the luncheon event in preparation
for their sous vide “bath.” Sous vide preserves the aromas,
flavors and nutrients of fresh ingredients unlike any other
style of cooking. It’s also a very healthy cooking preparation,
requiring no cream or butter. “You truly taste the purity of the
food,” Knoll says.
Meanwhile, Estate Sommelier Pete Yen and the Guest Services
staff begin researching vintages that will not only complement
Jordan cuisine, but also resonate with the guests personally.

day-of-EvEnt prEp

Chef Knoll begins the day of every lunch in the Jordan Estate
garden. Sometimes he’ll pick squash blossoms. Other times
he’ll pick herbs. He collects this bounty by basket and hefts it
all back uphill to the winery kitchen where the organizing and
arranging of ingredients—an artful canvas of colors in its own
right—begins.
Then, after mise en place, the hard-core preparation gets
underway.
“Throughout the process, I am constantly thinking about
how best to showcase each individual component of a recipe
in its purest form, and in doing so, the entire dish is elevated,”
Knoll says.
Depending on the menu, Chef Knoll usually alternates between
the grill and the stovetop, often simultaneously juggling dishes
on both. Because of his background in Asian and Pacific Island
cuisine, Chef Knoll frequently utilizes Japanese Seven Spice,
which, he says, brings “a little heat and a little sweetness.”
Chef Knoll makes many of his spices in-house, including sea
salts and hand-ground rubs that include dehydrated herbs and
vegetables from the Jordan garden.
16

While Sous Chef Manuel Reyes tackles menu execution,
Chef Knoll orchestrates dish design and the final preparation of
every ingredient. Great detail is placed on how components are
artistically assembled on the plate—and the role a garnish plays
in visual completeness of each dish. Our chef prides himself on
touching every plate—personalized attention that is conveyed in
both the presentation and flavor profiles of his food.
“It’s not about ego; think of it instead as a form of quality
control and the final step in my artistic process,” Knoll quips.
“More than anything, I just want to make sure every dish
we send out represents a seamless balance between the
wine and food.”
At some point in the day, usually once the entrées are cooking,
Chef Knoll and Sous Chef Reyes turn their gaze toward dessert.
Many end-of-meal sweets, such as the estate raspberry shortcake,
require a dedicated eye to their preparation. In these cases,
Chef Knoll may enlist First Cook Cristina Valencia to make her
shortcakes from scratch while he focuses on the raspberries,
including his famous raspberry “dust.”



Jordan Estate Tales - Volume 8 - 2013

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Jordan Estate Tales - Volume 8 - 2013

Jordan Estate Tales - Volume 8 - 2013
John's Welcome
Contents
Rob's Welcome
New & Notable
Unlocking the Family Cellar
Pursuit of Passions
Food for Thought
Spring Releases
Estate Recipies
Chateau Boutique
Jordan Estate Rewards
Stories That Linger
Events Calendar
On the Road
Tours & Tastings
Reflections
Jordan Estate Tales - Volume 8 - 2013 - Jordan Estate Tales - Volume 8 - 2013
Jordan Estate Tales - Volume 8 - 2013 - John's Welcome
Jordan Estate Tales - Volume 8 - 2013 - Contents
Jordan Estate Tales - Volume 8 - 2013 - 4
Jordan Estate Tales - Volume 8 - 2013 - Rob's Welcome
Jordan Estate Tales - Volume 8 - 2013 - New & Notable
Jordan Estate Tales - Volume 8 - 2013 - 7
Jordan Estate Tales - Volume 8 - 2013 - Unlocking the Family Cellar
Jordan Estate Tales - Volume 8 - 2013 - 9
Jordan Estate Tales - Volume 8 - 2013 - 10
Jordan Estate Tales - Volume 8 - 2013 - 11
Jordan Estate Tales - Volume 8 - 2013 - Pursuit of Passions
Jordan Estate Tales - Volume 8 - 2013 - 13
Jordan Estate Tales - Volume 8 - 2013 - Food for Thought
Jordan Estate Tales - Volume 8 - 2013 - 15
Jordan Estate Tales - Volume 8 - 2013 - 16
Jordan Estate Tales - Volume 8 - 2013 - 17
Jordan Estate Tales - Volume 8 - 2013 - 18
Jordan Estate Tales - Volume 8 - 2013 - 19
Jordan Estate Tales - Volume 8 - 2013 - Spring Releases
Jordan Estate Tales - Volume 8 - 2013 - 21
Jordan Estate Tales - Volume 8 - 2013 - 22
Jordan Estate Tales - Volume 8 - 2013 - Estate Recipies
Jordan Estate Tales - Volume 8 - 2013 - Chateau Boutique
Jordan Estate Tales - Volume 8 - 2013 - 25
Jordan Estate Tales - Volume 8 - 2013 - Jordan Estate Rewards
Jordan Estate Tales - Volume 8 - 2013 - 27
Jordan Estate Tales - Volume 8 - 2013 - Stories That Linger
Jordan Estate Tales - Volume 8 - 2013 - 29
Jordan Estate Tales - Volume 8 - 2013 - Events Calendar
Jordan Estate Tales - Volume 8 - 2013 - 31
Jordan Estate Tales - Volume 8 - 2013 - On the Road
Jordan Estate Tales - Volume 8 - 2013 - 33
Jordan Estate Tales - Volume 8 - 2013 - Tours & Tastings
Jordan Estate Tales - Volume 8 - 2013 - Reflections
Jordan Estate Tales - Volume 8 - 2013 - 36
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