Chef Jered Couch recently departed The Dish, 205 N. 10th St., and accepted the executive chef position at Jack’s Urban Meeting Place, 1000 W. Myrtle St., also known as JUMP.
Couch and Brian McGill, owner of Willowcreek Grill and Raw Sushi, opened The Dish in 2013, and the contemporary restaurant has garnered rave reviews over the years. McGill now has sole ownership of the restaurant.
Couch, a Culinary Institute of America graduate, is known for his whimsical cuisine that bounces around the globe. Expect to find similar fare and certainly some new dishes put out by the kitchen staff at The Dish, which will mostly stay intact after Couch’s departure.
Chef Jared McCusker, who’s been cooking at The Dish since 2013, was tapped to run the kitchen. He’s a graduate of Oregon Culinary Institute in Portland.
“Jared’s a talented guy. Actually, this is the best crew I’ve ever worked with,” Couch says. “I’m leaving the place in good hands.”
Couch finished up at The Dish on Feb. 26, and started his new position a few days later with Thomas Cuisine, which has secured the food services contract at JUMP. Couch previously worked for Thomas Cuisine as executive chef at Saint Alphonsus in Nampa before opening The Dish.
The top floor of the recently unveiled JUMP boasts a large kitchen and several banquet rooms, and Couch and his crew also will run the corporate cafeteria at the J.R. Simplot Company once the adjacent building gets finished later this year.
New food trucks
The Boise area’s fleet of roving food trucks just got larger.
In January, Jeff and Rhi Hoisington moved back to the Boise area from Provo, Utah, where they owned and operated two food trucks in the Salt Lake City area. These mobile food businesses, Mad Mac and Bowld Over, are now operating at various spots across the Treasure Valley.
“We are still trying to find locations around town,” Jeff Hoisington says.
During lunch, they have been setting up from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the Idaho Transportation Department parking lot on State Street, while at night they are typically found at local breweries such as Slanted Rock Brewing Co., Boise Brewing and County Line Brewing.
Mad Mac, as the name suggests, specializes in gourmet macaroni and cheese. Expect to find six different cheesy macs, including the signature Mad Mac ($6.50, made with six cheeses), Buffalo Chicken Mac ($8.50), Bacon Cheeseburger Mac ($9.50) and more.
Bowld Over, a large trailer with a bowling pin emblazoned on the side, dishes up rice and mashed potato bowls. The menu includes a Veggie Bowl ($6.50), Green Thai Curry Bowl ($8.50) and a Cuban Pork Bowl ($8.50) with verdant chimichurri sauce. Expect to find potato bowls such as a Rib Tips and Gravy Bowl ($8.50) and BBQ Pork Bowl $8.50).
Besides the bowls, Bowld Over also serves gourmet sodas made with Torani syrups and other flavors that get added to Coke and Pepsi products. Try a Dirty Islander, a tropical-inspired soda made with Sprite, coconut, mango, pineapple, lime and a splash of cream.
On Sundays, the Hoisingtons post their schedules for the upcoming week on their various social media accounts (Facebook, Twitter and Instagram).
Landmark Café open in Nampa
The Landmark Café recently opened in Nampa at 3143 E. Greenhurst Road in the former Blue Sky Café spot.
Here, you will find comfort food with a global twist.
In the morning, it’s all about biscuits and gravy, chicken-fried steaks, eggs Benedict, breakfast burritos, omelets and hearty skillets.
Later in the day, diners can score finger steaks, burgers, sandwiches and even some Mandarin Chinese offerings such as orange chicken and sweet and sour chicken.
The café keeps around nine handcrafted brews on tap, including beers from Nampa’s Crescent Brewery.
The Landmark Café is open 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Tuesday-Thursday; 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. Friday and Saturday; and 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Sunday (breakfast menu only). Online: landmarkcafenampa.com
Capitol Cellars hits one-year mark
Capitol Cellars, 110 S. 5th St., is celebrating its one-year anniversary on March 4 and 5 by supplementing the regular menu with specials to commemorate the joyous occasion.
After all, many restaurants fail within the first year. That’s obviously not the case at Capitol Cellars, which has earned an ardent following in the last 365 days.
The subterranean restaurant and wine bar has an underlying political theme — owners Skip and Melinda Smyser were both Idaho state senators — but the inventive seasonal menus and extensive wine list are what keep diners coming back.
Head chef Dave Shipley has devised a few appetizers specials for the weekend. Don’t be surprised to find blackened salmon beignets and Thai meatball sliders with wasabi aioli and pickled veggies.
Shipley says he might even have a bigeye tuna entrée special as well.
All diners will receive a complimentary glass of bubbly, and every bottle on the wine list is 25 percent off.
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