Good Eats

Rolf & Daughters @ Nashville

Rolf and Daughters is a neighborhood restaurant located in the historic 100-year-old Werthan Factory building in Germantown Nashville. Fantastic farm to table small plates restaurant in Nashville that blew our minds with bold flavors and fresh ingredients.

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Chef and Restauranteur Philip Krajeck © Submitter

Chef Philip Krajeck was put on earth to make pasta. Let’s look at the evidence: He happened to live between two Italian families while growing up in Brussels, Belgium. One night he’d be eating gnocchi with fresh porcini with one family, cacio e pepe with the other the next. Later, he worked in a Swiss kitchen surrounded by Italian cooks. That’s where he learned how to form the twisted pasta called strozzapreti (“priest strangler”), among other shapes.

The food draws on Northern Italian and Mediterranean influences with Southern ingredients to create a dynamic and seasonally driven menu. Their take on “modern peasant food,” involves thoughtful cooking rooted in a commitment for using the
best ingredients available in the moment and a passion for executing classic
techniques.

The restaurant encourages communal eating, with long benches and small plates for sharing. Thank God we have a large group, and we pretty much ordered everything on the menu.

Starters

Sourdough, seaweed butter

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Sourdough, seaweed butter

Hand churned butter with nori and a really soft sourdough. Butter was full of umami.

Dry aged beef tartare, black garlic, sprouted lentils

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Dry aged beef tartare, black garlic, sprouted lentils

This is the classic beef tartare reinvented. Sweet balsamic vinegar, garlic oil and dill sauce, chopped beef tartare. The introduction of the dill was a break from traditional of using capers with beef tartare. No shaved cheese, which is good too.

Toast, stracciatella, marigold, spruce

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Toast, stracciatella, marigold, spruce

Stracciatella is a soft cheese made from buffalo milk. Creamy and savory and heightened flavors from marigold, olive oil and spruce, yes, spruce from pine trees.

Coppa, peanut oil

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Coppa, peanut oil

Coppa is an Italian ham made from dried cured muscle. They cured their own coppa and lightly moistened with peanut oil. Yummy treat.

Green salad, strawberry, radish, ricotta vecchio

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Green salad, strawberry, radish, ricotta vecchio

Salted milk cheese from sheep milk with mesclun kale greens tossed with simple vinaigrette. The combination of kale and mesclun was very flavorful and satisfying.

New potato, spring onion, smoked roe and green strawberry

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New potato, spring onion, smoked roe and green strawberry

The green strawberry provided the tang and the fruity touch. Ikura provide the alto ESA and umami. Tossed with a light mayo, bacon bits with roasted baby potatoes.

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New potato, spring onion, smoked roe and green strawberry

Every mouthful was a complex mixture of different flavors

Pastas

Rolf & Daughters pride themselves on their homemade pastas that were coupled with innovative sauces.

Gemelli, hazelnut, nettle, Thai basil

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Gemelli, hazelnut, nettle, Thai basil

Homemade twisted spaghetti that has been flavored with Thai basil and nettle. Tossed with roasted hazelnut, olive oil and ricotta.

Garganelli verde, heritage pork ragout, sarvecchio

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Garganelli verde, heritage pork ragout, sarvecchio

Sarvecchio is a worthy replacement of parmigiano on this spaghetti ragout.

Chitarra, clams, chorizo verde, fennel pollen

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Chitarra, clams, chorizo verde, fennel pollen

Guitar string pasta (chitarra) but not as fine as angel hair, the umami packed cream sauce was so satisfying.

Cecamariti, cultured butter, black pepper

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Cecamariti, cultured butter, black pepper

A very cheeky pasta and my favourite for the evening despite its simplicity. These pasta are literally called “husband blinders” because of the resemblance of sharp ends of the spindle. Cooked with a creamy, heavy fermented milk. It’s like pasta cooked in original flavour yakult but it’s savory instead of sweet.

Mains

Sea trout, turnip, lovage, lemon, green garlic

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Sea trout, turnip, lovage, lemon, green garlic

No the garlic did not turn bad. It just referred to whole garlics poached in oil. The salmon was done perfectly, rightly salted with a pinkish red centre.

Pastured chicken, preserved lemon, garlic confit

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Pastured chicken, preserved lemon, garlic confit

A roasted half chicken with crispy skin covered in buttery whole garlic and preserved lemon sauce that celebrated a symphony of simple rich flavors.

Heritage pork, ramp, rhubarb, sweet pea

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Heritage pork, ramp, rhubarb, sweet pea

The pork chop was tender and what a sweet meat it was!

Desserts

Toasted rice mousse, whey caramel, grapefruit, fig leaf

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Toasted rice mousse, whey caramel, grapefruit, fig leaf

Savory from caramel, sweet from the rice mousse, tang from grapefruit granitas and fig for an added dimension of herby proportion. So so innovative and yummy.

Japanese cheesecake, pine nuts, strawberries, sorrel

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Japanese cheesecake, pine nuts, strawberries, sorrel

Half the party loved it, the other half (me included) didn’t like the Japanese cheesecake. It’s not the steamed cake like the Japanese but it was a fluffy New York cheesecake but not as heavy and tangy.

Sweet potato ice cream, habanada pepper jam, blood orange

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Sweet potato ice cream, habanada pepper jam, blood orange

The orange slices were dried and candied. The sweet potato ice cream was fantastic.

Sourdough ice cream, huckleberry, chocolate

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Sourdough ice cream, huckleberry, chocolate

Tang from the huckleberry. It was almost like Oreo but the star was the sourdough ice cream that made the chocolate dust tasted like Oreo.

Afterwards

Krajeck’s neighborhood restaurant Rolf and Daughters debuted in late 2012, with the goal of serving dishes highlighting whole-animal butchery, seasonal produce, and rustic pastas. This beloved restaurant is located in a historic 100-year-old factory building. Inside the stylish, wood-hewn space, diners nosh on the James Beard Award-nominated chef’s version of “modern peasant food”.

Converted from an old boiler room, the industrial look was perfect backdrop to a solid dinner. The service was polished and the staff was knowledgeable of the ingredients and origins, especially the pastas. The bar was supposed to be one of the best in Nashville, with top mixologists coming to guest bartend sometimes.

“It was never our goal to be nationally recognized,” Krajeck said in 2012 when he first opened R&D. But just nine months later, Bon Appetit was in town and named R&D its #3 Best New Restaurant of 2013. Worth a detour if you are in Music City.

Rolf & Daughters
700 Taylor St, Nashville, TN 37208, USA
Tel : +1 615-866-9897

https://www.rolfanddaughters.com/

Date Visited : Apr 2019

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