Best of 2011: Best Chef
Wednesday, March 16, 2011
414 Calle Principal, Monterey
Whether it’s an after-work drink and a snack or a fancy celebratory dinner, Montrio Bistro delivers for every occasion. It’s easy to tear through Chef Tony Baker’s “Small Bites” menu, including the sinful oatmeal-crusted brie while sipping a creative cocktail like the “Beta Vulgaris,” which employs roasted beet juice in a delightful way. Take care to leave some room to savor entrees like the pork trio, though – bacon-wrapped pork tenderloin with shredded pork. A worldly wine list and inspired “dessert bites” menu, which features items like doll-sized carrot cake with coconut cream cheese ice cream, complete the incredible.
The question was put to Baker, “What makes a great chef beyond the requisite education, experience and skill?” His answer: Integrity when it comes to ingredients, using the local bounty to advantage, listening to customers, going the extra mile to satisfy people and great support staff (“I’m nothing without my team.”).