When chef Roxanne Spruance of New York’s The Kingsley was asked about the best thing she’d ever eaten, she protested: “Oh man, there are too many amazing chefs out there and amazing meals that I have had to name just one.” Certainly this will be true on May 28 when Spruance and other chefs, hundreds of foodies and top winemakers converge on the Southampton Arts Center for Dan’s Rosé Soirée, the official kickoff event of summer in the Hamptons. Spruance was willing to share that “T’Jara Vineyards is my favorite winery on Long Island!”
Why should consumers seek out local produce and wine?
[It’s] fresher [and] tastes better. Support your local economy and the little guys that are doing it right!
My favorite dish to pair with a fine rosé is: oysters.
How old were you when you knew that you’d have a career in food?
I started cooking at a very young age at home with my parents. We had a pretty hands-on culinary experience on the home front. Canning, making jams and jellies, my dad baked all of our bread, etc. I started my apprenticeship by happenstance when I was 15 at Blackbird in Chicago. I absolutely fell in love with kitchens then. While I went on to play field hockey at Michigan State University and double major in Environmental Biology/Zoology and Fisheries and Wildlife, I continued to pursue cooking.
Would you agree that chefs and farmers have a lot in common in that both are a little crazy and overworked?
I think that can be said for several different jobs. I think what sets the food industry apart is that it’s not just a business, but a very personal experience. It’s hospitality, and it’s easy to let things slide and get lazy. The attention to detail and the drive to make everyone that walks through the door of my restaurant to have the best experience possible is what makes us chefs crazy and overworked.
What crop could local farmers grow that you would be excited to use?
I buy almost everything local—I guess if someone greenhoused avocados somehow!
If I got a tattoo tomorrow it would depict: the Chicago flag.
What do you have in your pantry that would make another food pro jealous?
Our vast line of housemade pickles, jams, jellies, vinegars and oils.
What local ingredients will you be using in the high summer season?
Tomatoes, pole beans, greens, stone fruits, berries—everything!
I could create a fine meal with just these five ingredients: chicken, lemon, thyme, garlic, potatoes.
What are you most looking forward to about being a part of Dan’s Rosé Soirée?
Tasting the best of what Long Island rosés are all about and celebrating the beginning of summer!
Find the latest info on all of Dan’s Taste of Summer events this summer—Dan’s Rosé Soirée, the official kickoff event of summer in the Hamptons on Memorial Day Weekend (May 28); the new Dan’s Corona MonTaco presented by Don Julio, a Mexican-themed fiesta at Gurney’s Montauk hosted by Adam Richman, Travel Channel host, author, food & travel explorer on July 7; Dan’s ClambakeMTK at Gurney’s Montauk, back for its second summer on July 8; Dan’s GrillHampton (July 21), celebrating its 5th anniversary; and Dan’s Taste of Two Forks presented by Farrell Building Company (July 22), now in its 7th year—at DansTaste.com.