Taste Spoonline’s Love
By Morgan Smith
Walking down Hightower Rd. and passing in front of Spoonline, Sous Chef Greg Clarks’ infectious personality lures your attention to the outdoor patio where he is interacting with patrons. Whether you know him or not, his smile and laughter will make you feel welcome without having spoken a word to him.
Starting his cooking career in Park City, Utah, Clark began cooking for Silver Restaurant. With American-Mediterranean style dining, Greg attributes his love of cooking certain foods like pastas because of Silver Restaurant’s uniquely flavorful menu.
After six years of cooking, Clark is in Girdwood and jumped at the opportunity to work for Alexandra Fletcher, Owner and Executive Chef of Spoonline. He was hired December 2018 and after only six months found himself stepping up to sous chef under her. Together they plan new creations and he makes sure her visions come to fruition.
During my recent dining experience, Clark illuminates further by describing how they want to create a fine dining experience but in layman’s terms. There are no fancy titled dishes, just unforgettable, healthy food. The focus on their fall menu is going to be on those warm, scrumptious, hearty, comfort foods we crave as it starts to get cool.
“We try and keep the food as local as possible,” Greg points out.
He lets me checkout the kitchen and explains all that his work entails. He begins gathering ingredients for an appetizer called AK Scallops, featuring locally sourced Kodiak scallops. It was fun to watch him in action cooking and helping staff around him. He made it seem easy and seamless. He was truly at home in the kitchen.
Each little step he took to prepare the dish made it seem more delectable: pan-braised bok choy, seared scallops, vegan Thai basil curry sauce topped with nasturtiums and pansies. The orange edible flower on our dish was a gorgeous addition and amusing to eat.
The hardest part of photographing freshly cooked food is holding off because the scents and sights are enticing. Every bite was savory and the sauce accompanied the scallops nicely. Clark asked what we wanted for dinner, and I choose portobello tacos and Glen Sterley, who was eating with me, choose filet mignon. With wine and beer now available, the menu is complete with something for everyone.
Waiting for the next course, I looked around and took it all in. The cool, slight breeze was refreshing, and the greenery surrounding the patio was beautiful and calming. It was the perfect way to wind down after a hectic day. Portobello tacos arrived with three grilled then steamed corn tortillas, filled with a house made vegan taco mix of mushrooms, walnuts, chickpeas, lentils and Baja spices, then topped with pico de gallo and green onion.
The taco sauce was a smoky vegan Adobo pepper sauce and added kick. Sides are black beans and dirty rice (jasmine rice, caramelized onions, finely diced bell peppers, caramelized onion stock). Every bite was a little different as all of the ingredients came together.
The filet mignon was excellent as well. Herbes de Provence seasoned grass fed beef, roasted broccoli and potatoes (or seasonal vegetables) with gremolata pan sauce. The meat was tender and seemed to melt, which paired well with the potatoes. By now I was full, until I saw the dessert menu…
Rose water meringue was my pick. It sounds beautiful to look at, and it tastes even better. The meringue was layered with rose petal whipped cream and topped with a sweet pistachio streusel and drizzled with rose petals. The pink hues throughout the entire dish really were something to behold. My mouth is still watering thinking about the taste. Greg let me know that Gabbi Bucci was to thank for the tasty treat. She’s in charge of the dessert menu and responsible for the finishing touch that completes every meal. Stuffed and satisfied, I will be back time and time again.
It’s not just because of the remarkable food but Clark’s and the staffs’ love for what they do and how at home they make you feel. The fall menu is packed with a variety of new dishes from Beef Bourgogne with puff pastry and green salad, Madras curry bowls with seared tofu, dal, roasted cauliflower, saag paneer and naan, mole` chicken thighs with polenta waffles alongside ginger salsa verde roasted root veggies with spicy maple butter and so much more. I can’t wait to taste what appears.
174 Hightower Rd., Girdwood
Tue.-Sat. Lunch 11 a.m.- 3 p.m., Dinner 5-10 p.m.
Sun. Brunch 11 a.m.- 2 p.m.