Dan Doyle likes to cut to the chase. But this doesn’t make him come off as an asshole, more like your buddy who wants to share some good news with you as fast as possible.
Observing his presence in the kitchen, Doyle is more likely to command with a pat on the back than a slap on the wrist--though he’s not one to miss an easy jab, of course. He’s affable, and like a confident athlete Doyle knows that you don’t have to open your mouth too much--just let the play speak for itself. His focus at both Poogan’s establishments--Porch and Smokehouse--has been “technique over flash” in order to ensure simple, quality Southern dishes.
At Poogan’s Porch, Doyle has taken the helm of a legacy, at Smokehouse he’s working to create one. And while Doyle enjoys all styles of cooking from braising to frying, he certainly would not have spearheaded a restaurant with smokehouse in the namesake if he wasn’t comfortable at the lip of a smoker. And that’s just what “Fowl Mouth” at Charleston Wine+Food will afford him.
The event will be at Cooper River Brewing this Thursday evening and features a host of chefs smoking anything-with-wings on Big Green Eggs.
“I’m picturing it like a fancy backyard barbecue.”
With the high profile and wanting palette of Charleston Wine + Food, one could reason there will be the temptation for a bit of atypical showboating. But Doyle knows that.
“At these kinds of events, you always want to put your best foot forward,” he says. “But you don’t want to get too far away from what you do at your restaurant. It’s an easy mistake to make, but you don’t want someone coming into your restaurant and it’s totally different.”
On Thursday, Doyle’s dish will feature one of his darlings: quail. The just-gamey-enough bird (“always feels like you went out and shot it yourself”), has often popped up on Poogan Porch’s specials board and even had a brief stint on an early version of the Smokehouse menu.
We won’t let the bird out of the bag here, but Doyle described a dish that marries Earthly, sweet, and savory--with a little bit of char--that we imagine will accomplish a lot with a little. Technique, not flash.
Knowing quail was Doyle’s favorite fowl bird for Fowl Mouth, I was curious, what was his favorite foul word for a foul mouth?
“For me? ‘Fuck.’ I mean, it’s the restaurant industry. It’s like an adjective around here.”
Way to cut to the chase, Chef.
Tickets for Thursday’s “Fowl Mouth” are available here.
Want to catch Chef Doyle on his home turf? Tickets are still available for The Poogan’s Porch Signature Dinner on Friday here.