12 days: on the fourth day of christmas: fox… (2017)

– Anyone who ate at ubuntu in the late aughts will know that Christopher Kostow wasn’t exaggerating when he recently introduced Jeremy Fox as one of the most talented and creative chefs of our time.  Fox is celebrated for his intuitive understanding of vegetables, and his dynamic vision for them in the kitchen, which he […]


Anyone who ate at ubuntu in the late aughts will know that Christopher Kostow wasn’t exaggerating when he recently introduced Jeremy Fox as one of the most talented and creative chefs of our time.  Fox is celebrated for his intuitive understanding of vegetables, and his dynamic vision for them in the kitchen, which he has codified in his cookbook “On Vegetables.”

Since leaving Napa, Fox has relocated south to Santa Monica, where he is chef of two restaurants, Rustic Canyon and the recently opened Tallula’s.  Cooking this year on day four, he is one of two chefs this year (and in the five years that I’ve been photographing this event) to be invited back as a guest chef at the Twelve Days of Christmas at The Restaurant at Meadowood.

3rd Course: Pozole Verde

If fact is stranger than fiction, then nature is certainly more magical than anything humans could devise.  And Fox conveys this brilliantly in his bold use of color in his cooking.

His opening course included a trio of vibrantly colored salads: beets and berries in deep purples and hot pinks; the glowing warmth of yellow spaghetti squash, with bright-orange trout roe; and a patch of green arugula hiding a cache of crispy porchetta.

He also served a beautiful posole verde painted in pastels – a rainbow of thinly shaved radishes and garden herbs, echoed in the watery shades of shellfish, like blushing clams, pink spot prawns (from Monterey Bay), and peachy sea urchins.  On the side were served crispy blue corn tostadas, fresh out of the fryer.  This was my favorite Fox course of the night.

Telling “The Tale of Two Californias,” Kostow’s team brought their Culinary Farm to the dinner as well.  For canapés, The Restaurant at Meadowood presented dragon’s tongue, a fleshy arugula that turns deep purple at the edges, with bean miso (made by Nick Sobiek, one of the cooks).  They also served a pea “spring roll”: young peas and their shoots wrapped in a pliable wrapper made of peas (only in California could you serve these fresh from the garden in December).

Kostow served one of the best dishes I’ve ever had at The Restaurant at Meadowood.  I had it at the restaurant the night before the Twelve Days of Christmas started, and he served it again on this night with Fox.

It appears to be a wedge of roasted celeriac.  But it’s actually a wedge of cabbage that has been interleaved with buttery black cod – both whole pieces as well as a mousse of the fish with a little bit of scallop mixed in for structure.  The molded half-domes (basically a bombe) are steamed, cooled to set, cut into wedges, and then pan-fried to give it a bit of color.  The cabbage practically melts away, leaving only bit of its sweetness behind.  All of it so tender that where the cabbage ends and fish begins, you can’t really tell.  It’s fantastic.

5th Course: Beef

Fox ended the dinner with a colorful salad of citruses, served with a loose-crumbed ricotta cake, followed by marcona almonds rolled in lavender sugar.


Below, you’ll find the menu from the fourth night of the Twelve Days of Christmas with Jeremy Fox.   To see all of the photos from this dinner, CLICK HERE.



Mushroom Empanadas
Hoja santa chimichurri.

Oysters & Succulents


Dragon’s Tongue
Bean miso.

Pea 2.0
Green peas, pea shoots wrapped in pea wrapper.

(The Restaurant at Meadowood)

First Course 
Trio of Salads
Beets, berries, pistachio dukkah & orach.
Spaghetti squash, preserved lemon, & trout roe.
Arugula, olives & pepperoncini.

Second Course
Bean, fermented onion.
(The Restaurant at Meadowood)

Third Course 
Posole Verde
Shellfish, plate of tostadas.

Fourth Course 
Roasted Cabbage & Cod
Sabayon of smoked roe.
(The Restaurant at Meadowood)

Fifth Course 
Cardoon giardiniera,
Garlic “bread” with black truffles.

Sixth Course
Ricotta Cake

Lavender Almonds

Forlorn Hope
Napa Valley Semillon, 2012

Charles Ranch Chardonnay
Fort Ross-Seaview, 2016

Hirsch Vineyards
Pinot Noir
Raschen Ridge; Sonoma; 2014

Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon

Anthill Farms

Day 4: Jeremy Fox

Below are links to my posts and photos from all of the Twelve Days of Christmas dinners I have attended over the past four years at the Restaurant at Meadowood. Each chef is listed with the restaurant with which they were cooking at the time they participated in the event (some have moved on to other projects and restaurants).


Scott Anderson (Elements; Princeton, New Jersey)
John & Karen Shields (Formerly of Townhouse; Chilhowie, Virginia)
Phillip Foss (EL Ideas; Chicago, Illinois)
Stuart Brioza & Nicole Krasinski (State Bird Provisions; San Francisco, California)
Jason Franey (Canlis Restaurant; Seattle, Washinton)
Matthias Merges (Yusho; Chicago, Illinois)
Mori Onodera (Formerly of Mori Sushi; Los Angeles, California)
James Syhabout (Commis; Oakland, California)
Nick Anderer (Maialino; New York, New York)
David Toutain (Agapé Substance; Paris, France)
Josh Habiger & Erik Anderson (The Catbird Seat; Nashville Tennessee)
Christopher Kostow (The Restaurant at Meadowood; St. Helena, California)


Andy Ricker (Pok Pok, Portland, Oregon & New York, New York)
Rodolfo Guzman (Boragó; Santiago, Chile)
Carlo Mirarchi (Blanca and Roberta’s; Brooklyn, New York)
Tim Cushman (O Ya; Boston, Massachusetts)
Ashley Christensen (Poole’s Diner; Raleigh, North Carolina)
David Chang (Momofuku; New York, New York)
Matthew Accarrino (SPQR; San Francisco, California)
Mark Ladner & Brooks Headley (Del Posto; New York, New York)
Rasmus Kofoed (Geranium; Copenhagen, Denmark)
Nicolaus Balla & Cortney Burns (Bar Tartine; San Francisco, California)
David Kinch (Manresa; Los Gatos, California)
Christopher Kostow (The Restaurant at Meadowood; St. Helena, California)


Matthew Orlando (Amass; Copenhagen, Denmark)
Frank Castranovo & Frank Falcinelli (Frankies 457, Prime Meats; New York, New York)
Kobe Desramaults (In de Wulf; Dranouter, Belgium)
Alexandre Gauthier (La Grenouillère; La Madelaine-sous-Montreuil, France)
Blaine Wetzel (Willows Inn; Lummi Island, Washington)
Joshua McFadden (Ava Gene’s; Portland, Oregon)
Virgilio Martinez (Central; Lima, Peru)
Grant Achatz (Alinea; Chicago, Illinois)
Corey Lee (Benu; San Francisco, California)
Esben Holmboe Bang (Maaemo; Oslo, Norway)
Ignacio Mattos (Estela; New York, New York)
Christopher Kostow (The Restaurant at Meadowood; St. Helena, California)


Daniel Humm (Eleven Madison Park, NoMad; New York, New York)
Nenad Mlinarevic (Focus; Vitznau, Switzerland)
Christian Puglisi (relæ; Copenhagen, Denmark)
Jorge Vallejo (Quintonil; Mexico City, Mexico)
Joshua Skenes (Saison; San Francisco, California)
Matthew Wilkinson (Pope Joan; Melbourne, Australia)
Kim Floresca and Daniel Ryan ([One]; Chapel Hill, North Carolina)
Isaac McHale (The Clove Club; London, The United Kingdom)
Kyle Connaughton (Single Thread; Healdsburg, California)
Atsushi Tanaka (A.T. Restaurant; Paris, France)
Justin Yu (Oxheart; Houston, Texas)
Christopher Kostow (The Restaurant at Meadowood; St. Helena, California)


Mark Lundgaard Nielsen (Kong Hans Kælder; Copenhagen, Denmark)
Manish Mehrotra (Indian Accents; New Dehli, India; New York, New York; London, U.K.)
Jeremiah Stone & Fabián von Hauske Valtierra (Contra & Wildair; New York, New York)
Jeremy Fox (Rustic Canyon & Tallula’s; Santa Monica, California)

Photos: Jeremy Fox at the Culinary Farm with head farmer Zac Yoder; a colorful bowl of “Posole Verde” by Fox; Fox with his mushroom empanadas; dragon’s tongue with bean miso; Fox dressing a salad of beets and berries with toasted benne seeds; roasted cabbage and cod; aged beef course; garlic “bread” with black truffles and a side of cardoon giardiniera; Jeremy Fox signing the board; all-kitchen group shot with Jeremy Fox.


Categories 12 days 2017

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