By Lauren Furey
There is a “certified meat ninja” in town by the name of Blair Machado. The chef and butcher who earned his nickname from his sustainable, nose-to-tail, whole animal butchery, Farmstead Co., has cooked up Charleston’s newest pop-up series: Nomadic. He describes it as "a community-first supper club where guest chefs and local farms collaborate to celebrate fresh and sustainable eating in Charleston."
Machado and guest chef Ryan Nguyen of Little Miss Ha lit up The Daily's kitchen on November 21st. An intimate café and marketplace with an open kitchen, The Daily offers an ideal venue for chefs to plate up their culinary creations. It's a place that sells goods from local makers and creators, and partners with farmers and fishermen to provide their customers a true taste of Charleston.
In addition to being a ninja in kitchen, Machado is quite the showman, too, when it comes to engaging the crowd with the stories behind his dishes. At Nomadic, guests enjoy a true culinary experience as they gather at front row seats around a long community table. Coursed plates are paired with drinks and the level of interaction goes beyond eating at your typical restaurant. Come on in!
Nguyen's love for bright flavor shines through his vibrant cooking. Both he and his sister, Janice Nguyen Hudgins, are the masterminds behind Little Miss Ha, a fresh Vietnamese restaurant coming soon to Mount Pleasant.
The amuse-bouche was a Massachusetts char-boiled oyster with dry-aged Farmstead Co. bacon.
A pasta first course returned us to land after enjoying the amuse-bouche from the sea. Paper-thin pasta dough was stuffed with Keegan-Filion Farm-sourced pork and set gently atop a collard whey "brodo," Italian for broth. This course was a pleasant surprise providing tastes of both Italian and Southern cuisines.
The second course was my personal favorite. Tarvin Seafood's Carolina Shrimp took a dip in Little Miss Ha’s Curry with Carolina Gold Rice, charred cauliflower and cilantro. Nguyen told us all about the shrimp purveyor and how his mom’s lifetime friend worked there. Ironically, Nguyen has a shrimp allergy.
Up next as the third course was a Korean twist on fried chicken. This consisted of a Keegan-Filion Farm-sourced, buttermilk-marinated chicken thigh with 12 secret spices and a gravy flavored with smoked mushrooms, Benne seeds, cream and a golden roux.
Dessert was light and perfectly sweet. A buttermilk panna cotta was drizzled with a miso caramel sauce and topped with rice crispies topping was the grand finale.
Machado is not only a chef, but a true gentleman who thrives on bringing the culinary community together to create meaningful and supportive relationships. Lifting one another up is a core value of Nomadic.
To keep up with Machado and his Nomadic supper club, check out his website.
We are hosting a supper club at the Daily On December 19th. Mark your calendars to join us for a 5-course Italian feast. Ticket link here: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/nomadic-supper-club-tickets-85242401317?aff=erelexpmlt