While hiring your favorite chef to prep your daily meals is great in theory, financial realities make it more feasible to just employ some of his/her favorite ingredients, but when's the last time you saw a "Colonel's Secret Herbs & Spices" aisle in Pathmark? For Iron Chef'd meals & ingredients, hit Garces Trading Company
Opening today, GTC's Iron Chef Jose Garces' first foray into culinary curation: an indoor cafe/marketplace modeled after outdoor European affairs stocked with goods/ingredients featured on his menus, from hand-selected coffee roasts and pastries to imported cheeses and prepared foods, with full-service high-top butcher's block tables plus the option to uncork 200+ bottles of vino (purchased from the PLCB's first wine boutique), most of which're unavailable in regular Wine & Spirit Shoppes, which you normally leave Arbor Misty-eyed. The extensive prepared food menu includes everything from pasta dishes like linguini w/ clams, crab & bacon; to customizable deep dish pizzas plus thin-crust specialties like the bacon/onion/creme fraiche Tarte Flambee; to sandwiches like the chicken, bacon & Manchego Spaniard, which will say in a stern whisper, "You grilled my father. Prepare to fry". Market-wise, GTC's stocking 14 varieties of single-estate olive oils and vinegars, an impressive array of domestic and imported cheeses (semi-soft Spanish Monte Cabra goat, firm Italian Piave Vecchio), and a slew of charcuterie options including Jamon Iberico (made from acorn-fed black pig) and fennel-/peppercorn-laced Italian salami called Finocchiona, which disappointingly will grow shorter and shorter the more it lies around
Along with a rotating selection of weekly platters, GTC's also offering Plats du Jour options of meals for two, including Coq au Vin on Mondays, duck cassoulet on Tuesdays, and Cote De Bouef, a 28oz prime rib offered every Saturday, relegating Crispy Strips to a not-Saturdaily meal.