During a good number of my shoots I get recommendations of chefs I should meet and add to this project of mine, and Bobby's name has come up a few times. It took a bit of time but I finally met Bobby (and his wife Jessica) at Danny and Tessa's wedding reception. We hit it off, our wives talked all night and we had a great time chatting, drinking, and having some great food at Brennan's... kitchen tours and all. Although we only briefly talked about doing a shoot we really didn't talk about specifics of when, we just agreed it would be 'very soon'. Well, very soon went from a couple of weeks to a couple of months, then Bobby got busy opening up a new restaurant and it turned into a year. I would get in touch to see if Bobby had a free weekend at random with no luck, but finally we both ended up with a free Sunday in April and decided to finally get together and do a shoot. So, say hello to chef Bobby Matos of State of Grace, his wife Jessica who is also a photographer, and their two beautiful kids.
During all the excitement of finding a date to do our shoot, I forgot to ask Bobby what he likes to do on his time off at home and away from the restaurant life. So after a brief conversation I left it up to Bobby and Jessica to decide how the shoot would go. Turns out they like to throw down and cook meals with friends over, so that's exactly what they did. They invited over their long time friends Parisa and Jerry over, brought out some great wine, and enjoyed 3 types of cheese and crackers while we waited for the food to be finished and photographed.
So what did Bobby make? With the help of his kids, who helped him make the pasta from scratch, he made chitarra Americana pasta, roasted local squash with peas and ramps, avocado toast, snap pea and asparagus, and spring onion toast with blue heron farm feta cheese. And for dessert Bobby made chocolate pots de creme with rhubarb. While the food was being prepped a lot of good conversation and a few glasses of wine kept everyone company. I get asked often if I get to enjoy the food at my shoots and the answer is always 'yes', but being invited to sit and eat family style with a chef, their family, and their friends is usually special. Great family, food, and company, you can't really ask for much more than that.