THERE'S A new head chef in the kitchen at Black Barn Bistro and he, along with owner and executive chef Henry Gordon, has been cooking up some exciting plans for the summer.
Head chef Jason Brown recently moved to Hawke's Bay from Blenheim where he worked at Hans Herzog Winery. He has cooked all over the world including high-end lodges in America and Australia.
He says he is loving living in the fruit bowl of New Zealand and is looking forward to summer. The chefs have decided that it is time for a change in food direction.
"We want to simplify and strip back the way our food is presented," Henry said. "We intend to be produce-driven and be true to the product. Our menu will be refined yet unpretentious.
"There will be no unnecessary smears or dots. We will focus strongly on seafood and vegetables - after all we live in the heart of the fruit bowl of New Zealand.
"Really if it doesn't add flavour to the dish it won't make it onto the dish. Anyone can draw pictures on a plate but not everyone can do things right and simple.
"We want our diners to be blown away when they cut into their food."
Henry says they will be using the highest quality meat to celebrate the animal and ensure that it is sustainable.
"We will be rotating and changing our dishes frequently to keep things fresh and vibrant. We will also have specials with unique and interesting ingredients that showcase our local growers' and farmers' beautiful food."
He said all Black Barn staff including restaurant manager Dan Koch, were excited about the summer.
"It's wedding season and of course Sol Lounge Summer Series returns with the first one set to kick off on October 27."
Jason, who has well over a decade experience, says he is loving his new life at Black Barn.
"Who wouldn't? The grounds are phenomenal, the staff are great and I love the fact that from the kitchen you can see what's going on in the dining room.
"And then there's the exquisite artisan suppliers and beautiful fresh produce."
Henry says Jason is happy to chat with diners over the pass (where the food is collected for serving).
"I like to share the food passion," Jason says.
*For tickets to the Sol Lounge Summer Series go to www.sol-lounge.co.nz
*For any other enquires phone Black Barn Bistro on 877 7985.