Last night, the SAVEUR Test Kitchen was churning out dishes like queso with wild mushrooms and bacon, heirloom tomatoes with peach and burrata, shrimp toast, and barbecue short rib, all thanks to Atlanta-based chef Ford Fry and his team. Everything was served family-style, starting with the bubbling pot of cheese that we all hovered over and swiped at with pulls of just-made tortillas, washed down with bright, crisp sparkling rosé.
With six Atlanta restaurants under his belt, Fry is branching out—out west—to Houston, where he’ll be opening State of Grace this fall. He spoke to us a bit about what goes into naming a restaurant (and namely the structural trends that come and go: “X and Y,” “the X”), and finished things out with deep-fried, lemon curd-filled hand pies. A sweet ending to a sweet evening.
The evening started with a queso dip with wild mushrooms and bacon, served with warm, homemade tortillas. Guests drinking rosé and preparing for the evening feast. Michelle Heimerman Drew Belline slicing heirloom tomatoes for the salad with peaches, basil, and burrata. Michelle Heimerman Everything that’s great about summer—tomatoes, peaches, and basil—combined and topped with burrata. Michelle Heimerman With vegetables this colorful, how can you not Instagram them? Michelle Heimerman We love when the SAVEUR test kitchen is filled with smiling guests! Michelle Heimerman Queso this good is worth a little mess on your fingers. Michelle Heimerman Chef Ford Fry talking with St. John Frizell of Fort Defiance. Michelle Heimerman Editor-in-chief Adam Sachs with executive chef Bobby Matos and Drew Belline welcoming everyone to dinner. Michelle Heimerman Conference table by day, fancy dining table by night. Michelle Heimerman The star of the night: barbecue short ribs with Asian greens, chile sauce, and pistachio butter. Michelle Heimerman Because one angle of the short rib wasn’t quite enough. Michelle Heimerman Have we mentioned that the short rib was delicious? And that it was devoured immediately? Michelle Heimerman The whole gulf fish simply seasoned with lemon, oil, and salt before guests got their hands on it. Short ribs hot out of the oven. Michelle Heimerman Chef Ford Fry’s trays of roasted summer squash and mushrooms. Michelle Heimerman St. John Frizell of Fort Defiance enjoying a drink. Michelle Heimerman Editor-in-chief Adam Sachs and chef Ford Fry, celebrating another successful SAVEUR supper. Michelle Heimerman