Maderas Golf Club members and guests will be treated to a unique seasonal feast on Wednesday, Oct. 8 when the club presents its Oktoberfest.
The event takes place from 5-8 p.m. and will feature German fare and entertainment along with tastings of German wine and beer from Karl Strauss.
In the following interview, Maderas sous chef Ryan Gilbert provides a preview of the menu and talks about what makes special events at Maderas special for members and staff.
What type of event is Oktoberfest?
It’s a fun-loving, outgoing atmosphere that allows people to relax and sample some different flavors of food and beers and enjoy what might be an out-of-the-box experience for them.
How did the staff plan the menu?
We took a look at what was successful last year and then added some new things. For instance, the pork schnitzel was a favorite last year, so we brought it back and decided to work with chicken. That’s the fun thing about these special events is that, as a staff, it allows us to explore some flavor profiles we don’t get into normally.
One of the menu highlights is a three-meat sausage platter – bratwurst, knockwurst and bockwurst. Can you please give us Sausage 101 for those who aren’t familiar?
The brat is the most common, and that’s a heavily spiced pork sausage. It’s a very clean-flavored sausage. The other two are variations.
Knockwurst a little creamier, a little lighter and more delicate.
Bockwurst is a little more on the spicy side.
The three sausages really play off each very nicely and complement each other very well. It’s three variations of flavors that are in the same ballpark.
And what would Oktoberfest be without beer … tell us about the beer.
We’re offering a limited-release season Oktoberfest from Karl Strauss. It’s a California thought process on German beers. It gives people who normally drink a pilsner or ale a chance to try a new micro beer.
And that continues a local theme that predominates the menu at Maderas. Can you talk about the local emphasis at Maderas?
The term macrobiotics refers to sourcing and using local products, from vegetables to meat. Being in such a lucky area in terms of food allows us to do this.
Our real goal is to provide an experience from regions around the world while focusing on what is trendy, sustainable and readily available from California, with Southern California being our main source.
We feature dishes that range from Mediterranean to Asian to Southern California’s Baja influence. What we’re trying to do is open people’s eyes to something new and something they may unfamiliar with by spreading out our menu.
How much fun is that for you as a chef to be able to work across that wide a culinary range?
For me, coming from a fine dining aspect, I try to bring a different thought process to the country club atmosphere. Maderas is extremely high-quality, high-end, probably more so than most golf clubs.
That gives us the opportunity to take things up a notch and surprise people by putting our California contemporary spin on things.
It challenges us to maintain a baseline, but also to explore new flavors, new ideas and new presentations that you might not see in most country-club environments.
I feel lucky to be at Maderas, where I can focus almost entirely on food and the dining experience. For a chef, that’s an amazingly rare position and a wonderful thing.