The Garlic Press continues to serve up one thing new, whereas sticking to its roots

A Midland staple since 1999, The Garlic Press continues to supply an eclectic menu which options adjustments weekly.

Govt chef Joshua Washburn began working on the restaurant in 2001 and ultimately turned government chef then took over the restaurant in 2005. He bought the restaurant from Mike Hyatt and Cindy Stangby, who wished to maneuver to Florida. The Garlic Press is a neighborhood restaurant, a restaurant for vacationers and a spot that’s comfy however nonetheless receives excessive finish meals and repair, Washburn mentioned.

He was within the restaurant enterprise lengthy earlier than shifting to city. 

“I grew up within the restaurant enterprise,” he mentioned. “I began working in kitchens after I was 14 years previous. I labored my means by way of varied kitchens in Austin the place I grew up. Then I moved to Midland in 2001.”

Washburn really met his spouse, Gerenda, at The Garlic Press shortly after the announcement that he can be taking up the restaurant. Gerenda Washburn is the pastry chef and is accountable for one of the crucial expansive dessert menus on the town. The dessert menu additionally has drink pairings obtainable.  

“Most dessert menus on the town, with just a few exceptions, have solely three or 4 choices,” he mentioned. “There’s anyplace between seven and 10 choices on our dessert menu at any given time. They’re scratch made in home. We bake 3 times per week and make our personal sorbets in home as properly.”

The ever-changing menu retains the cooks and workers , Washburn mentioned. 

He mentioned the kitchen workers will throw out their concepts, focus on them then make totally different iterations of the thought till it’s a featured dish. He added that the restaurant has had challenges with discovering workers not too long ago like each enterprise. 

“The previous few years, labor is actually a giant concern with regard to kitchen workers,” Washburn mentioned. “Now we have a really enjoyable surroundings to work in, so between the creativity our workers is allowed to have, we now have been in a position to retain fairly a little bit of our kitchen workers.”

He mentioned the hands-on scratch kind of kitchen has additionally lent itself to an surroundings the place they promote from inside. 

Throughout his second yr as government chef, the restaurant began doing the annual beer-and-wine dinner sequence. The dinners are usually five-course meals paired with 5 – 6 drinks. He mentioned they may choose of wine or beer first then create a menu round these drinks. The final beer dinner was throughout October final yr.

“COVID has put a big dent in our particular occasions, in addition to staffing points,” he mentioned. “We do hope to select these up maybe this fall or finish of summer time.”

The Garlic Press’s iconic wine cork ceiling was began in 2006 and accomplished in 2012. He mentioned there was no scarcity of corks to create the characteristic. It began as a challenge to assist with the acoustic points within the room which had echoed whereas folks had been having fun with conversations over meals. He mentioned they don’t know precisely what number of corks are on the ceiling however from their very own scientific sampling they’ve decided there are between 80,000 and 100,000 corks. 

“There are a complete number of corks up there,” he mentioned. “On the ceiling above specific tables there are signed corks from milestones like marriage ceremony proposals, that individuals have had us glue it above that desk.”

Washburn mentioned his favourite dishes often embody the seafood specials that change weekly. 

“Two or 3 times per week we’ll have a brand new seafood merchandise rotating out and in,” he mentioned. “I’m a fan of seafood so any variety of these are my favorites.”

Of the Midland meals scene, Washburn mentioned he has watched a whole lot of chains transfer into city however in the previous couple of years he has seen extra native mother and pop eating places, non-public/private cooks and folks that do pop-up occasions. 

“There are fairly just a few extra gifted cooks in Midland than there was once,” he mentioned. “It has raised the bar for the remainder of us.”

A few of his favourite locations to eat embody Cancun Grill, Venezia Restaurant, Wall Avenue Bar and Grill — which he has been going to since he got here to Midland — and his favourite craft cocktail spot is The Blue Door. He mentioned he loves the restaurant’s location as a result of it’s a northern enlargement of previous Midland. The purchasing middle has advanced however stored its basic attraction with its stunning oak timber. 

So far as plans shifting ahead, Washburn mentioned nothing is kind of off the desk.

“We’re contemplating opening for lunch,” he mentioned. “We’d like to maybe convey a brunch onboard. We’ve been toying with a whole lot of totally different concepts.”

Hours of operation are 5 to 9 p.m. Tuesday by way of Saturday at 2200 W Wadley Ave. No. 6. For the most recent specials, head on over to the restaurant’s Fb web page 

The Bites

–La Bodega will have fun its fiftieth anniversary this Sunday. The restaurant could have dwell mariachi from midday to 2 p.m. and 6 to eight p.m. at 2700 N. Massive Spring St.. 

–Truthful to Midland declares grand opening live performance. The restaurant, bar and arcade will characteristic singer-songwriter Paul Cauthen identified for “Cocaine Nation Dancing,” “Holy Ghost Fireplace” and extra. The occasion may also have honest meals, carnival video games, chilly beers and extra on April 2. Extra particulars and supporting acts shall be introduced later. The occasion shall be first come, first served with no tickets mandatory. Truthful to Midland is a 21 and up venue. 

–Style Week Trunk Brunch that includes Daniel Esquivel and different native designers and retailers shall be from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. April 3 at Barrel and Derrick. 

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