NORWALK, Conn. -- After being in the business for so long and growing with the Cask Republic group, Chef Carl Carrion said he's honored to be recognized for his work. Carrion was recently chosen among the class of "Most Innovative Chefs" by the folks behind the Greenwich Wine + Food Festival, which takes place Sept. 23 to 24.
The Norwalk-based chef who lives in Hamden said his cooking inspiration comes from pure experimentation. "Whether it's blending a variety of ingredients or taking a classic dish and doing something different with it, really inspires me," he said. Chef Andrew DiCataleo from Patria Restaurant [in Mahwah, N.J.] is among his mentors. "He taught me so much when we worked together," explained Carrion.
Among his favorite ingredients? Fish.
Carrion said he loves working with seafood, but fish in particular. "Fish is so versatile and you can blend it with a variety of ingredients," he explained. "Fish is delicate and while you can prepare it in the most simplest ways, it also gives me the opportunity to use some culinary techniques in the cleaning and preparation process."
For those who haven't been to Norwalk's Cask Republic, Chef Carrion said the restaurant is known for its top-notch beverage program. "We have a variety of amazing craft beers, bourbons and our bartenders have elevated the craft cocktails to go beyond the basics," he said.
"With that comes the assumption that Cask Republic only offers pub-style food which isn't true," he added. "We're not just a burger and wings place. Yes, we have them and people love them but we offer a globally-inspired menu. From meats, seafood, and vegetable dishes, we have something for everyone."
Go to www.caskrepublic.com/ for more information.
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