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Monday, May 22, 2017

05/22/2017 - Chef Tony Adams, Cavallo Point - The Lodge at Golden Gate; Travis Day, Owner/Butcher - Thistle Meats

Tony Adams
Cooking School Head Chef
Cavallo Point - The Lodge at Golden Gate

Chef Tony Adams has spent much of his life in kitchens all over the world. Growing up in Central Maine, he attended Johnson & Wales University in Providence, obtaining a unique Bachelor’s Degree in Culinary Arts. After college, he spent time in several fine dining restaurants, including working with Raymond Blanc at Le Manoir Aux Quat’ Saisons in Oxfordshire, England. Chef Adams was an instructor at Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts Orlando for more than five years, teaching over 4500 students in his tenure, and twice being named the Best Chef Instructor as voted by the student body. He also owned a local-food-focused business in Orlando, Big Wheel Provisions. He has spent recent years cooking in restaurants and for private clients in Nantucket and Pennsylvania. His specialties include charcuterie, butchery, making fresh pasta, as well as Modern American Cuisine and Classical French and Italian cuisines. When he’s not in the kitchen, you can find him hunting for hard-to-find bourbon, fishing from the beach, and keeping track of his favorite New England sports teams.

The Cooking School

Rated #1 Hotel Culinary School by, the Cavallo Point Cooking School is an intimate place to taste, create and explore. Filled with natural light and top-of-the line culinary equipment, the Cooking School offers an ever-changing roster of cooking classes and programs flavored by the bounty of organic offerings from the San Francisco Bay Area. All classes are led with a keen eye toward seasonality, sustainability and stewardship.

Sunny working kitchen with plenty of elbow room

The Cavallo Point Cooking School, 1200 square feet in size, features four comfortable workstations for hands-on classes. For demonstration classes, two flat screens linked to adjustable cameras provide a close-up look, and comfortable chairs and tables accommodate the students. There is a maximum capacity of 20 people in the hands-on cooking classes and 30 in the demonstration classes. Country wood tables and Heath Ceramics create a beautiful dining experience when the meal is ready.
Please note that if a minimum number of participants is not met 24 hours prior to the class, the class may be canceled and participants will be fully refunded. Should you need to cancel your class reservation, you may do so within 72 hours of the scheduled class start time without penalty and a full refund will be extended. If you cancel less than 72 hours in advance, the full cost of the class will be forfeited.

About Cavallo Point - The Lodge at Golden Gate

Cavallo Point – one look tells you this is a very special place. Look deeper and you'll find an innovative partnership.

Cavallo Point – the Lodge at the Golden Gate was created by the Fort Baker Retreat Group, a project of Passport Resorts, Equity Community Builders and Ajax Capital Group. The Fort Baker Retreat Group is working with the National Park Service and the Golden Gate National Parks Conservancy in a unique private/public/non-profit alliance to restore, enhance and preserve Fort Baker as a National Park for generations to come.

The name "Cavallo" is part of the San Francisco Bay's history. It dates from 1775 when a rocky point near Fort Baker was named "Punta de Caballo" by the commander of one of the first European vessels that sailed into the bay. Wild horses once roamed here, and "caballo" is the Spanish word for "horse." Early California settlers started using "Cavallo," as the pronunciation of b and v in Spanish are very close, and the name took hold.



Travis Day
Thistle Meats, Petaluma

“I’ve worked for years at restaurants trying to find new creative ways to use products and reduce waste.”  Travis Day

Located in the heart of downtown Petaluma, beloved neighborhood butcher shop, Thistle Meats, reopened on May 10 under the capable hands of well-known chef and butcher, Travis Day. The shop will continue to source grass-fed, pasture-raised meats and offer a charcuterie program featuring handmade pates, Salumi, terrines, and other house-cured meats. Travis plans to also offer an expanded, new menu of prepared foods including sandwiches, salads, and soups, along with marinated and seasoned meat cuts and other local items.

“Thistle Meats has been a company that has held itself to a very high standard of quality and craftsmanship. I’ve worked for years at restaurants trying to find new creative ways to use products and reduce waste. I’m excited to carry on what Thistle Meats has already brought to Petaluma. We will continue to support the local farms and small producers that have supplied to the shop over the years. I also look forward to bringing my influence to the prepared foods served in the shop and utilizing preserved meats and vegetables to elevate a dish,” says Travis. 

The Talent: Experienced Butcher Travis Day
Travis has progressed through kitchens abroad and in the Bay Area, having worked in well-known kitchens including Boneta Restaurant in Vancouver and in San Francisco at Central Kitchen, Commonwealth, Oro, and Salumeria.  Since he was sixteen, he’s been doing two things he loves most: cooking and traveling. He has traveled to over 20 countries, including Japan, France, Spain, Italy, Mexico, Costa Rica, Malaysia, New Zealand and many others, which have opened his eyes to new experiences, ingredients, people, and foods. 

Travis was most recently Chef de Cuisine at Oro in San Francisco, where he worked with Chef Jason Fox (Commonwealth) to develop the menu and recipes. Prior to that, he spent two years as Sous Chef/Salumieri with the Ne Timeas Restaurant Group, focusing on the butchery programs for both Central Kitchen and Salumeria.  He quickly became known for crafting Salumeria’s cured meat platter and Central Kitchen’s salumi brunch board, circulating different cuts every week. Before making the move to San Francisco, Travis spent over two years in Napa at The Fatted Calf, where he worked with acclaimed butchers like Aaron Gilliam, and many others. It was there that he learned the ins and outs of whole animal butchery and also helped lead classes about whole hog butchery, pates, terrines, and more. Throughout his career, Travis has worked with incredibly talented chefs, including Sho Kamio (Iyasare); Jeremie Bastien (Boneta); Thomas McNaughton and Ryan Pollnow (Ne Timeas Restaurant Group); and Jason Fox (Commonwealth). These chefs had an unwavering attention to detail and care of product and had a huge influence on how Travis cooks and cares about food. Combining all of his experience and travels, Travis aims to continue to offer what people love about Thistle Meats while adding to the menu as they make new product.

Travis’ childhood friend and butchery mentor, Aaron Gilliam, has been a salumi maker at Thistle Meats from the beginning and will be helping Travis with the transition. Also, Liam Watson will be staying on as the head production manager. Both Travis and Liam have been collaborating on ways to expand upon the already great selection of products at Thistle Meats.

Joining Travis as part of this project is long-time friend and talented chef, Kyle Itani, of Hopscotch and Itani Ramen, both located in Uptown Oakland. “Kyle and I met over 10 years ago when we were both working for Chef Sho just after his departure from Ozumo,” commented Travis. “When I decided to take over Thistle Meats, I knew from the beginning that he would be the best partner to help oversee the operations.  We share a similar philosophy of offering high-quality products and an amazing experience for guests, which we’ll bring to Thistle Meats. Kyle’s mind for running efficient businesses is so important for a butcher shop, where the margins are lower than restaurants. We both want to continue offering great value products to the community while I add new offerings to the menu.” 

The Menu: Focus on Local and Sustainable Meats & Ingredients
Thistle Meats boasts a menu that draws from a variety of local farms. The menu will be comprised of daily prepared foods, salumi, pates, smoked meats and humanely raised pork, poultry, beef, and lamb. There will also be other items such as bread from Red Bird and Della Fattoria, local cheeses from Andante and Cowgirl Creamery, and additional goods, creating the perfect stop for locals and travelers alike.  At Thistle Meats, Travis will also take an old world approach to meat and vegetable preservation, which brings out the delicious and complex flavors of naturally fermented products. 

Travis has close connections with local farmers and ranchers and will continue to offer high-quality ingredients and celebrate Petaluma’s local bounty. The farmers who supply Thistle Meats include Stemple Creek Ranch in Tomales (beef & lamb), Magruder Ranch in Potter Valley (beef & lamb), True Grass Farms in Valley Ford (pork), Mendocino Organics in Ukiah (pork), Llano Secco in Chico (pork), Green Strings Farms & Cline Vineyards in Petaluma (lamb), Monkey Ranch in Petaluma (lamb), Liberty Duck in Petaluma (duck), Marin Sun Farms in Petaluma (chicken), Rockin’ S Rabbit Farm in Cotati (rabbit) and Jones’ Rabbit Farm in Santa Rosa (rabbit).

Travis plans to host monthly Sunday Supper events and will team up with guest chefs from leading San Francisco Bay Area restaurants. He plans to launch the first Sunday Supper dinner in early June with Lord Stanley.

This summer, Thistle Meats will get their beer and wine license. Travis has enlisted Jenny Schwarz, Co-Owner/Beverage Director of Hopscotch and Sláinte, who will oversee the on-premise beer and wine offerings, as well as the retail wine program.

The Space: Fresh and Transparent
The clean, welcoming environment was designed by Wylie Price. The open butchering area in the center of the shop will remain as the main focal point, along with the stainless steel and glass chiller cabinets that round out the fresh, modern look. The 1,800 square-foot shop will include 13 seats and a beautiful new bar in the window with seating. The backyard features an ivy wall and exposed white brick, creating the perfect outdoor setting for the Sunday Suppers and other events. 

About Thistle Meats: Thistle Meats is a whole animal butcher shop and salumeria where everything is cut and created by hand. Located in the heart of downtown Petaluma, the shop features prepared foods, along with fresh meats, charcuterie, and salumi from Owner/Butcher Travis Day. Thistle Meats is open daily except for Tuesdays from 10:00 a.m. – 7:00 p.m. For more information, please visit or call (707) 772-5442 and follow us on Facebook and Instagram. Thistle Meats, 160 Petaluma Boulevard North, Petaluma, CA 94952.