Tonawanda News

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September 9, 2013

Webster's Bistro chef influenced by world travels

(Continued)

NORTH TONAWANDA —

Though he started not long after the restaurant officially opened, Bain didn’t drastically change the menu, but has gradually made tweaks here and there. What he did add, though, was a daily specials menu that highlights his creativity, Hughes said.

”There are things he’s bringing on to the menu that are absolutely beautiful,” she said.

One specials menu included a Niagara County apple salad with arugula and frisee with red and green apple slices, candied walnuts, craisins and crumbly goat cheese, dressed with mulled cider vinaigrette. A grilled swordfish dish is topped with pommery mustard glaze accompanied by a tomato coulis and braised fennel. Bone-in pork chops are served with a pommery mustard demi glace with sweet potato gratin and haricot vert.

Though he loves French cuisine — he said he’s drawn to the classic techniques and the way the French organize a kitchen — Bain said he’s also been influenced by his global travels both when his father was in the military and during his own stint in the Marine Corps.

”We traveled a bit so I got to see some different cultures and ethnic areas and their influence on cuisine,” Bain said.

His time spent in Hawaii, for example, exposed him to Asian fusion, which perhaps influenced the Thai-inspired cole slaw he served with short ribs the day of his interview. 

Bain said he most loves to cook meats, but has a hard time narrowing down his favorite meal to cook or eat. Hughes said he does wonders with swordfish, tuna and a pork chop dish that’s “to die for.”

Ultimately, Bain said he was drawn to the Webster Bistro because of the “feel” of the restaurant, but also because of his excitement over the growing culinary scene in North Tonawanda, naming the proprietors of the Remington Tavern and Seafood Exchange as some of his friends.

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