A Bemus Point cook who got his culinary education in Florida, France and Manhattan has returned to open an ambitious Chautauqua County restaurant.
Brian Kiendl opened The White Carrot on Sept. 2. The building, 4717 Chautauqua Stedman Road, Mayville, was formerly Mazza Chautauqua Cellars, a wine-tasting center. His wife Robin, who grew up in Bemus Point too, owns Jamestown’s Gary N. Johnson insurance agency, which she took over from her father.
The White Carrot’s menu is straightforward farm-to-table, featuring fine dining touches in an upscale casual setting. There’s a la carte entrees like a Bell Evans chicken breast with leg farci sausage, barbecued cabbage, roasted apple puree and apple-chicken jus ($28). There’s a six-course tasting menu, $80 without wine, $120 with pairings.
Bread is housemade from scratch. Recent appetizers include smoked carrots with rye crumble, cumin cream and mint ($10), Abers Acres corn soup with marinated scallops and Hungarian chiles ($11), and a garden tomato tartine with dehydrated olives and 12-year-old cheddar ($8).
At The White Carrot, “garden tomato tartine” means just that. Thirty-five tomato plants behind the restaurant supply the daily menu, and are among vegetables that Kiendl’s crew are canning for winter. After Kiendl and his wife Robin closed on the building this spring, he put in a nearly half-acre garden. “Vegetables come from the ground 40 minutes before you eat them,” he said.
In farm-to-table style, Kiendl’s crew is filling basement shelves with pickles and preserved items from the garden, and stashing bushels of potatoes in a root cellar.
Kiendl started cooking in Florida, graduated from the French Culinary Institute, then spent seven months working for Chef Jean-Paul Battaglia at L’Affable, he said. He returned to New York, and worked as a chef de partie at Boulud Sud and the Museum of Modern Art’s members dining room before deciding to come home.
The White Carrot seats 48 inside, and 20 on a back terrace. Hours: 5:30-9 p.m., Monday through Saturday, closed Sunday. Phone: 269-6000.
Sample menus can be viewed at thewhitecarrotrestaurant.com, but “I’d say 30 to 40 percent of the menu changes every day, due to seasonality and market prices,” Kiendl said.
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