Great dishes are inspired by all kinds of things — sometimes the very serving bowls that will showcase them. This is true of chef Colin Bedford’s ode to the summer cherry tomato. He sought vivid colors that would pop through a vitrine-like double-walled glass bowl, and flavors that were equally bright. The dish is constructed by layering a confit of oven-roasted tomatoes with eggplant-crème fraîche caviar topped with tomatoes pickled with sherry vinegar, lemon and brown and white sugar. Balled cucumber dressed in a little olive oil and a small mound of grated parmesan crowned by a quenelle of tomato water sorbet complete the idea: summer cherry tomatoes to the third power.
Don’t expect this dish to be on the menu next summer, though. Bedford and sous chefs Thomas Whitaker and Thomas Card are committed to innovation; they introduce an entirely new menu each season, no repeats.