When chef Andrew Milsap thinks about what sparked his interest and passion for food and cooking, he immediately recalls his teenage summers spent in his grandmother’s kitchen.
“Every night I was her helper in the kitchen for dinner. That’s where it all started. I was basically her sous chef,” Milsap said.
Milsap is the new head chef at the Broad Street Grille and will be part of several changes aimed at bringing in more local food and, restaurant officials hope, more local customers.
The restaurant management is initiating a series of changes beginning this weekend with a new spring menu. A new entrance on Broad Street will allow patrons to come directly into the restaurant without having to go through the lobby of The Chattanoogan Hotel, a move management hopes will help locals rediscover the location as a stand-alone destination for dining, not just a “hotel restaurant.”
New lighting, decor, and interior and exterior paint have also been completed as part of what food and beverage director Rick Shell calls significant changes to give the place a softer and more intimate feel.
Milsap’s new role will help steer the BSG in a new culinary direction.
“We are very excited about the positive improvements at Broad Street Grille. Chef Andrew Milsap is an extremely talented chef who is passionate about his work, and we are delighted that he will be serving as chef of the BSG,” Shell said in a prepared statement.
The locally trained chef has been with the Broad Street Grill since 2007 in various roles, including banquet chef, baker and, up until recently, sous chef.
“I have worked with really excellent chefs here. They are always teaching new things,” he said.
Before joining BSG, Milsap worked at St. John’s Restaurant as a sauté chef and at Mellow Mushroom.
Milsap is already working to expand the restaurant’s commitment to local, in-season food and said what is available from the farmers each day will dictate what is placed on the menu that night. The young chef is in touch with most of the area’s local farms, either via email or in person, and he makes purchases at the weekly farmers markets. Milsap picks up the food directly from the farmers and cooks it that night.
“You can’t get any fresher than that,” he said.
Milsap’s nightly tasting menu will also focus on farm-fresh ingredients and making items from scratch with local products.
Two new weekend promotions aimed at attracting locals include a Friday steak night and, beginning April 21, a Saturday date night.
“On Friday nights, diners will enjoy some of the most incredible meats in the region … featuring high-quality, upscale meats from Atlanta-based Buckhead Beef,” officials said.
The changing weekly menu on steak night will be a supplement to the regular menu and will feature options such as buffalo Carpaccio; double lamb chops; petite filet mignon; dry, aged, bone-in New York strip; and French veal chop. Appetizers will range from $7-$12, and entrée selections will start at $24.
The Saturday date night menu is a fixed-priced, three-course dinner for two that includes a bottle of wine for $65 a couple. This menu will also change each week depending on what the freshest available products are and what’s in-season, according to Milsap.
Milsap said he is excited to combine the craft of cooking with the craft of growing fresh food.
“It’s always going to be something different. If you want to try something different to see what the culinary professionals are doing, then come here and taste what we do with what the farmers craft,” he said.
Additional information about the menu and other offerings can be found here.
Updated @ 1:43 p.m. on 04/12/12 to correct a typographical error.