While it has been a little bit since our last blog post, we have been hard at work hammering out details that will be the foundation of your experience at The Alley Los Altos.
The first major decision is the style of service that will be used. We hope to offer a more communal, casual environment than is found in a more traditional restaurant setting. The difficult part in this is how to offer this casual feeling without losing the top notch service that our clientele will demand. One big step is to offer items in a “family style” or “shared” format, in which guests interact and share a meal with friends and loved ones.
A great example of this service style are the lamb chops as seen here, which will be available for order “by the chop.” If you are dining alone, you can enjoy one as a snack. If dining with friends, order 3, 4, or 8 (an entire rack). These chops are dressed with fig, pine nuts, and mint. Along with the lamb chops, we are playing with a whole grilled fish. We will have a large, wood fired grill that will allow us prepare delicious dishes like this. The fish is sauced with aji amarillo sauce, a traditional accompaniment in Peru. Also pictured above are my sous chefs for the day (the Heff girls). We are hoping to sidestep some child labor laws ;)
Another huge part of the overall experience are the plates we choose to serve the food on. Below are some examples of the beautiful pottery we are considering. All of these come from Jered’s Pottery in Berkeley, just across the bridge from us here in Los Altos. Jered has been making pottery for 20 years and shares the same devotion to locality that we do. He sources almost all of his clay from Northern California, creating a plate that is local. This is a direct extension of our ideal in the products we serve at The Alley.