If you were already a little confused about how the whole Jeremy Fox/Barnyard thing was playing out after the announcement earlier this month that Fox would no longer be involved in the upcoming Venice project, then today's newest announcement doesn't simplify things.
Up next for Fox is a project he's calling Old Soul, a run of dinners from Dec. 6-9 and Dec. 13-16 which will be held at Square One Dining in East Hollywood. Organizing the event is this is not a pop-up, a new “culinary incubator” program from Helena Brown and Helen Springut, both of whom were formerly part of the Barnyard team. Old Soul plans to continue its run after the holidays and will offer a four-course $50 prix fixe menu that will change weekly. Those who attended Fox's Barnyard “debut” at Test Kitchen likely will recognize some of the dishes planned for Old Soul.
That means things like braised sweetbreads with Texas toast, apples and gherkins; a black roux gumbo with rock shrimp and hominy; carrot cavatelli with carrot top pesto; cool pumpkin chowder with green pistachio curry; duck consommé with farro and fried chicken skins; and roasted persimmon with whipped ricotta. You can check out the rest of the sample dishes online, but to put it succinctly, it's one the most intriguing menus we've seen in quite a while.
As for what lies beyond the upcoming run of dinners, Helen Springut tells us, “The long-term plan for Old Soul is indeed to have a permanent location.” She adds that her and Brown's organization involves “working on more than one project, with the ultimate goal of helping chefs to open restaurants.”
For the time being, though, the first “this is not a pop-up” endeavor sounds oddly similar to a pop-up (perhaps it's meant in a surrealist “Ceci n'est pas une pipe” way). But as long as Fox is cooking, we'll gladly station ourselves anywhere his journeyman tendencies take him.
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