Port Fonda Soft Opening

Port Fonda Soft Opening

Port Fonda hosted its second soft opening on June 27, 2012 with a focus on appetizers and cocktails. The full menu will be available in early July. Patrick Ryan, Jamie Davila, and collaborators such as The Utilitarian Workshop created a magical space that has character and personality derived from the use of materials, strong imagery, an upbeat soundtrack, and well-executed design.

The food is great and the drinks are amazing. Can’t wait to try more. If you haven’t already, find Port Fonda on Facebook.

Enough words. Let the eyes feast.

Chef Patrick Ryan and his son Eamon.

Matt Baldwin of Baldwin Denim had a hand in the creation of staff hats and uniforms.

Jamie Davila and Chef Patrick Ryan


I love details like the name of this cactus is printed on the container as if it were a botanical garden exhibit. Thoughtful, understated.

Artwork by Mike Wheeler, Mercy Seat Tattoo, above and below.

Port Fonda marguerita

Port Fonda lights

Jerry Fisher

Jerry Fisher

Jamie Davila

Jamie Davila

Port Fonda winifred

Port Fonda wall

Port Fonda waitstaff 1

Port Fonda Un Mas Por Favor

Port Fonda Toreador

Port Fonda staff

Port Fonda staff 6

Port Fonda staff 5

Port Fonda staff 4

Port Fonda staff 3

Port Fonda staff 2

Port Fonda reserva

Port Fonda Reserva 2

Port Fonda pig arrow

Port Fonda pencil cactus

Port Fonda negra modelo

Port Fonda Our Lady 929

Port Fonda oven

Port Fonda Patrick Ryan son 3

Ciabatta from Fervere

Ciabatta from Fervere

Ciabatta Fervere

Ciabatta, meaning slipper in Italian, is a light, airy loaf. Fervere, a great local bakery owned and operated by Fred Stompinato near 17th and Summit, makes a delicious version.

From their website:

Fervere, (fur-vair’-ay) is the Latin root word for “passion” and “fermentation” – essential ingredients for great bread. Fervere’s oven is fashioned after the communal ovens of ancient Europe, when families in villiages took turns feeding the starters, stoking the fires and baking bread. Traditionally the fire was built on the baking surface (hearth), allowed to heat the mass of the oven, then swept clean. Fervere uses an electric heat source. The burner is pulled out of the oven chamber before baking. Because the baking chamber is also the heat chamber, heating and baking do not occur at the same time. Fervere’s slow and gentle mixer imbues the crumb with a tenderness and sweetness unique to hand-kneeded breads. All of Fervere’s flours are organic, as are all other ingredients, whenever possible.

Kansas City Originals

Kansas City Originals

Between July 2011 and December 2012, I photographed 19 chefs and restaurant owners and wrote profiles about them for KC Originals. During that period, I also photographed numerous dishes with accompanying recipes for the web site.

The brief profiles explore the subject’s culinary background, training, influences, and philosophy. The purpose is to inform diners about chefs and local owners at these independent restaurants in the greater Kansas City area. The recipes and profiles assist diners when scouting out local places to eat or dishes to try.

What I loved about these assignments was meeting professionals in the restaurant industry and supporting Kansas City’s local businesses and culinary scene.

Pictured above: Chef Charles d’Ablaing, Chaz on the Plaza.

Chef Profiles

Chef Debbie Gold from The American Restaurant

Chris Carle, co-owner of Coach’s Bar & Grill

Phil Bourne, owner of Waldo Pizza

Chef Steven Cameron from Gaslight Grill

Chef Stefan Haney from Rumors Steakhouse

Chef Matthew Arnold, The Webster House

Chef Glenn Bindley, The Phoenix

Chef Tom Legg, La Bodega Leawood

Broadmoor Technical Center, Broadmoor Bistro

Chef Grant Wagner, JJ’s

Chef Kathy Fiorello from Carlo’s Copa Room

Chef Michael Smith, Extra Virgin

Chef Brian Aaron, Tannin Wine Bar and Kitchen

Owner Greg Hunsucker, V’s Italiano Ristorante

Chef Carl Thorne-Thomsen, Story

Chef Charles d’Ablaing, Chaz on the Plaza

Co-owner Victor Cascone, Cascone’s Restaurant

Chef Reed Plumb, Waldo Pizza

Sushi Chef Koji Sakata, Nara


Louisiana Crawfish Salad
by Chef Julio Juarez, Starker’s Restaurant

Buttermilk Poached Campo Lindo Chicken Breast and Spring Fiddlehead Ferns
by Chef Debbie Gold, The American

Fried Paella with Mixed Greens and Creme Fraiche
by Chef English Renshaw, La Bodega

BBQ Pulled Pork Nachos
by Kokopelli Mexican Cantina

Champagne Fish and Chips
by Chef Vito Tovar, The Phoenix

Sweet Potato and Leek Soup Recipe
by Chef Charles D’Ablaing, Chaz on the Plaza

Ancho Chili Coffee-Rubbed Steak with Grand Marnier Butter
by Executive Chef Patrick Williams, Pierpont’s at Union Station

Mussels and Pernod Cream
by Chef Robert Padilla, Trezo Mare

Ahi Tuna on Bruschetta
by Chef Amy Presson from Marina Grog & Galley

Sicilian Sfinge
by Chef Victor Cascone of Cascone’s

Shrimp in Mustard Sauce Appetizer
by Chef DeDe Shields, Shields Manor Bistro

by Anthony Spino, Anthony’s Restaurant and Lounge