chef bruce dillon1.jpg
Chef Bruce Dillon takes care to source mostly local ingredients.
Hey, high rollers and low, when you want to take a break from playing slots,

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Snoqualmie Casino Chef Says Game On When It Comes to Cooking Game

chef bruce dillon1.jpg
Chef Bruce Dillon takes care to source mostly local ingredients.
Hey, high rollers and low, when you want to take a break from playing slots, there might be no swankier dining room to check out than Terra Vista at Snoqualmie Casino. It's got a destination-dining kind of menu filled with meals you'd splurge on after hitting it big, including a $38 burger. Chef Bruce Dillon's the man in charge, and he gives us some winning insight into feeding gamblers in this week's Grillaxin.

SW: Your menu is so impressive. When creating it, are there different considerations that come into play when catering to the casino crowd?

Dillon: Yes, we focus on several considerations: exclusivity, product quality, regional affiliation, and flavor profiles. We feel it's important to offer a variety of dining options to our guests, and at Terra Vista we strive to be the finest of fine dining.

Some of the items on the menu seem priced for high rollers. What makes a burger worth $38?

Great question! We use a very exclusive ground American Kobe beef from Crescent Harbor Ranch in Oak Harbor. Each 12-ounce patty is grilled and served with a healthy slice of foie gras and thick-cut Berkshire slab bacon, topped off with our Johnnie Walker Blue Label steak sauce. All of this contributes to the best burger you will ever taste--well worth the $38!

Who are some of your favorite local producers?

We use Mad Hatcher quite a bit; everything from our eggs to our chicken to our rabbit. I also like Crescent Harbor Ranch and Double R Ranch located in the Okanagan region of Washington State.

Can you explain to the average diner why it's important to use local/organic ingredients?

It's important that our guests understand that using local and organic ingredients not only supports Washington's economy and environment, but it also allows to us to gain inside knowledge on the source and quality of the products we use. Just as you like to know the ingredients of your meal, we like to know when and how those ingredients were harvested. The rich flavor and freshness experienced in every dish at Terra Vista is a result of the sustainable, farm-to-table ingredients we incorporate into the menu.

It's great to see elk on the menu. Does it sell well? How would you describe the taste to somebody who has never tried it before?

The elk dish has been incredibly popular. We have been selling about 40 pounds a week. Elk has a similar texture to beef and is pork-like in flavor. Our current spring menu offers New Zealand elk tenderloin prepared with lemon chutney and potato pave and a side of our housemade elk sausage with rosemary and mint oil.

Check back for part two of this week's Grillaxin Q&A for more from chef Bruce Dillon.

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