Special Event
Scott Conant
Scott Conant
Patti Jackson
Patti Jackson


James Beard Foundation Award Winner Scott Conant
Pastry Chef Patti Jackson

Alto | NYC

Wednesday, December 7, 7:00 pm
Members $125, guests $150

Scott Conant secured his place as one of the city’s culinary stars when he opened the award-winning L’Impero in 2002. But last spring Conant’s star began burning even brighter when his swank new midtown Italian, Alto, exploded triumphantly onto the New York City restaurant scene. To Conant, Alto’s name is doubly meaningful: first as reference to the Alto Adige (the northern region of Italy whose traditional German-inflected ingredients make inspired appearances on Alto’s menu) and second, as a nod to his own high-concept, alta cucina approach to Mediterranean fare.

Indeed, Conant is no stranger to fine dining. A graduate of the CIA, his résumé boasts apprenticeships in such solid Italian kitchens as San Domenico, Barolo, and Il Toscano. While working at small local favorites City Eatery and Chianti, he earned a loyal following with his creative and challenging twists on classic dishes. Since opening L’Impero, Conant has been named one of America’s Best New Chefs by Food & Wine, appeared on the cover of Gourmet, earned a three-star review from the New York Times, and was nominated for Best Chef in New York City by the James Beard Foundation (L’Impero won our Best New Restaurant Award in 2003). Now, with Alto, he has raised the bar even higher. “L’Impero was very personal…but I want to be respected on a world class level,” Conant explained during an interview with Absolute magazine.

It’s no wonder Conant has been described by New York magazine as “the Jean-Georges of ‘Italian-influenced’ cuisine.” The New York Times’ Eric Asimov raved about the deft hand with which Conant “offers combinations that balance austere complexity with elegant spicing and earthy richness.” Frank Bruni conjured the words “enchanting,” “magical,” and “delicate” to describe the chef’s rabbit-flecked ricotta and potato gnocchi and a pork loin accompanied by caramelized cabbage and potato noodles. Simply put, as Randall Lane wrote in Time Out New York, “few chefs can make so many truly new tastes emerge during a single meal.”

Joining Conant at the Beard House will be Patti Jackson, head pastry chef at Alto, who was formerly at Le Madri and Tuscan Square. Jackson’s focus on native and seasonal ingredients complements Conant’s creations and provides another twist on the regional Italian theme. The New Yorker called her desserts “uniformly excellent,” referring to a dish of early cherries, sweet frangipane, and an almond croquant as having “inspired its own hosannas.”

Polenta Integrale with Baby Vegetables and Snails

Ceci Blini with House-Smoked Trout, Horseradish Froth, and Caviar

Ash-Spiced Cured Venison Loin with Granny Smith Apple and Baby Onion Salad

Eel and Guanciale Terrine with Balsamic Glaze

Smoked Foie Gras Carpaccio with Green Tomato Marmellata

Collabrigo Prosecco NV

Slow-Roasted Sea Scallops with Sunchokes, Apples, and Black Truffles

Villa Sparina Montej Bianco 2004

Kobe-Style Beef Susci with Preserved Truffles and Organic Carrots

Villa Sparina Montej Bianco 2004

Rabbit Ravioli with Black Trumpet Mushrooms, Currants, and Foie Gras Emulsion

Fattoria Le Pupille Morellino di Scansano 2004

Sturgeon Sotto Vuoto with Bone Marrow Dumplings, Lagrein Reduction, and Caramelized Baby Cabbage

Il Palazzone Brunello di Montalcino 1996

Walnut Torte with Persimmon Sorbet, Crystallized Persimmon, and Spiced Sabayon

Massolino Moscato d’Asti 2004

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