• Kevin Heinonen

The New Year's Eve Prix Fixe Menu: A Culinary Journey

Our New Year's Eve menu, just released by Chef Mike Schmitz, is an exciting presentation of dishes calling on ingredients that allow us to reflect on comforts of times past while introducing new elements that inspire hope for a future of good fortune. As Chef says, "New Year's Eve is that sort of intersection where the past meets the future, and choices are everything."

The choices you can make when you examine the pre-fixe menu, are also different paths of possibilities. What you will find is a fair amount of options offered under each course, such as Lobster Bisque with tomato, saffron, and sherry, or the Roasted Duck Breast Breast with orzo, butternut squash, pomegranate, elderberry molasses, and pecans. "You can choose dishes that allow you to go on your own little culinary journey like a wish for a new year of adventure and trying new things," explains Chef. I'm happy to be featuring flavors of past and present. Still, I'm also excited about being able to work with new ingredients such as the North African flavors Harissa and Sumac, found in the Rack of Lamb, and playing with those."

Drawing upon his "wish to be more inclusive," Chef Mike is happy to offer beautifully executed vegetarian options like the Polenta and Mushrooms with black truffle, parmesan, garlic, bitter greens, and poached egg. It enables our guests, no matter which way they swing, to find choices they won't soon forget.

Chef Mike worked with a team that includes owner Kevin Heinonen, Front of House Manager Maura McNeany, and the Annex's Chief Mixologist Nick Williams, to identify some excellent pairings to complement and enhance each course. It includes wines from our very own Sutcliffe Vineyards and some of Nick's craft cocktail creations. Of course, we are happy to assist you in making other selections as well.

The dessert portion of our menu is an imaginative twist on some good old classics created by Pastry Chef Kat Biemann. Chèvre and Fig Cheesecake and a Flourless Double Chocolate Cake with black cherry compote and vanilla bean whipped cream rounds out this evening's fair and leaving you wishing you could start all over again.

Truth be told, all of our menus are treated with the same thoughtfulness, care, and creativity while it's centerpiece is collaboration. It's about "Suspension of Reality" as Chef puts it. "Sitting and enjoying great food and drink, allowing yourself to be entirely in the moment. We all work together to create that for everyone that walks through our doors."

The New Year is upon us, and like this festive Prix Fixe menu, 2020 looks to be Merry and Bright. The cost is $95 per person (tax, gratuity, and pairings are extra).

Make your reservations today via email, maura@tinderboxkitchen.com or call 928-226-8400 or click here to do it online.

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 Lobster Bisque tomato, saffron, sherry Lustau Don Nuño Oloroso Sherry or Hummingbird Cocktail Butternut Squash Soup apple, maple, sage, nutmeg 2016 Starmont Chardonnay, Napa, CA or Spiced Pear Paloma Cocktail Grapefruit and Avocado Salad baby greens, shaved fennel, chèvre, pistachio, mint, cilantro, honey balsamic vinaigrette 2018 Sutcliffe Rosé, McElmo Canyon, CO or 1919 Cocktail Charred Radicchio Wedge Salad house bacon, heirloom cherry tomato, crispy shallot, buttermilk blue cheese dressing Senda Verde Albariño, Rías Biaxas or Sun Seeker Cocktail COURSE TWO Deviled Eggs salmon roe, lemon, dill, cayenne 2016 Sutcliffe Chardonnay, McElmo Canyon, CO or Tumeric Tonic Cocktail Duck Liver Paté port geleé, red onion marmalade, grilled bread 2016 Ch. Roumieu Sauternes, Bordeaux, FR or Jack Whitman Cocktail Brie and Apple Butter Bruschetta granny smith apple, fennel 2016 Bastianich Chardonnay, Venezia, IT or La Canela Cocktail Oysters on the Half Shell shallot, cracked pepper, red wine vinegar NV Bouvet Rosé, Loire, FR or 1919 Cocktail COURSE THREE Roasted Duck Breast orzo, butternut squash, pomegranate, elderberry molasses, pecan 2015 Eyrie Pinot Noir, Willamette Valley, OR or Ventimiglia Negroni Cocktail Lobster Tail saffron risotto, sun-dried tomato, scallion, smoked paprika brown butter Rudi Pichler Grüner Veltliner, Wachau, AT or A Wrinkle in Thyme Cocktail Filet Mignon roasted garlic mashers, grilled broccolini, mushroom demi-glace 2016 Rowen Red Blend, Sonoma County, CA or Birthday Suit Cocktail Polenta and Roasted Mushrooms black truffle, parmesan, garlic, bitter greens, poached egg 2015 Tinderbox Blend, McElmo Canyon, CO or Smoke & Oil Cocktail Rack of Lamb harissa couscous, apricot, pistachio, cilantro, sumac yogurt 2015 Robert Foley Charbono, Napa Valley, CA or Black Manhattan Cocktail

Honey Ginger Arctic Char

black rice, baby bok choy, tamari beurre blanc

2018 Field Recordings Chenin Blanc, Central Coast, CA or Sirens of Titan Cocktail DESSERTS Chèvre and Fig Cheesecake graham cracker crust, local wildflower honey Broadbent Madeira, Madeira PT or Cure for Pain Cocktail Flourless Double Chocolate Cake black cherry compote, vanilla bean whipped cream Sutcliffe Doce Pecado, McElmo Canyon, CO or Coffee Bean Boulevardier Cocktail $95 per person pairings, tax and gratuity extra

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Everyone is welcome at Tinderbox Kitchen.