Scenes from Bruce Kalman’s SAVEUR Supper

The Union Pasadena chef threw a party in our test kitchen

"I've only made one foam in my life," Bruce Kalman jokes as he stands in front of us at our most recent SAVEUR Supper. As chef of Union Pasadena in sunny California, and the upcoming Knead Pasta Bar in Downtown LA's Grand Central Market, Kalman sticks with simple foods—like pasta and pig—and transforms them using his favorite local ingredients. And, while Californians may be quick to say that they have the best produce, we think that the locally-caught sardines and the honey- and lardo-dressed stone fruits that Kalman picked up at the Union Square Greenmarket for our New York dinner were hard-to-beat.

After mingling with one another and getting our fill of pre-dinner snacks, like stracciatella cheese-topped toasts that had guests chasing passed plates, we grabbed one more old fashioned (made with WhistlePig rye whiskey, a Vermont whiskey) and took our seats at the table, where we ate plate after plate of handmade pasta, smoked suckling pig, and the creamiest polenta we've ever had. There were many drinks and there were many dishes, but they all had one thing in common: they were simple and they were awesome. But enough talking—check out the gallery above to see for yourself.

"It's about simple great food," Kalman said. "I've only made one foam in my life."
Fava bean and tomato chip on stracciatella cheese on toast.
Bruce Kalman holds handmade spaghetti alla chitarra, named for the guitar-like strings through which he presses the pasta.
Dehydrate with old fashioneds made with Whistle Pig rye whiskey; rehydrate with San Pellegrino water.
Editor-in-Chief Adam Sachs mingles with guests, sticking close to the snack and cocktail bar.
Sardine fillets are oil-cured and the rest is fried, bones and all -- it might be our new favorite snack.
Kalman and Sachs cheers with Whistle Pig old fashioneds.
Handmade beet and crescenza tortelletti, which are later cooked and served with a poppyseed sauce.
Grilled stone fruits and radicchio are tossed with lardo and buckwheat honey.
Kalman plates his spaghetti alla chitarra.
We feasted on a whole suckling pig (not pictured: the salsa verde and fig mostarda we spooned over it).
The wine was flowing all night long.
To end the meal: olive oil cake with currants and honeycomb crème anglaise.
Kalman and his excellent team.

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