Summer of Supper Part 1 // Cologne
Now that the World Cup is over, we all need something new to light up our life, don’t we? Luckily, the Summer of Supper is there to fill the gap: A series of supper club events over 3 weeks, celebrating food, drinks…and love. The Summer of Supper is the brainchild of Marco Kramer and Torsten Goffin. Marco is the owner of Marien-Eck, a charming location in Ehrenfeld known for its cooking classes and food events. And Torsten is a photographer, scriptwriter, food and wine enthusiast and also a dedicated blogger.
The Summer of Supper started off last Saturday with two lady chefs, Simone and Sophie, both aficionados of vegetarian cuisine with occasional side leaps into the world of carnivores. According to their motto “Stadt, Land, Food” (city, countryside, food) they presented a mix of contemporary urban style and a culinary trip to the countryside. To my huge surprise Simone and Sophie aren’t the well-established team that they appear to be when seeing them act in the kitchen, preparing the food for the 30 guests of that night: Fact is they had never met in person, let alone cooked together, until very shortly before the event. Both are food bloggers – Simone operates Pi mal Butter and Sophie Cucina Piccina – and that is how they had come across each other. Coincidence has created a perfect match as it seems, both in terms of their culinary and their working philosophy: Not the slightest sign of stress or panic is hanging in the kitchen air, everything runs smoothly like a clockwork, perfectly coordinated and calm.
The same harmony reigns the entire 5 course menu, mainly inspired by Italy and very nicely combining savoury flavours with fruity components, like for example the opener: Culatello ham on small melon balls, seasoned with fennel seeds in orange caramel. The next course is a creamy Ajo Blanco with iced grapes and pistachios, a cold soup made from stale bread, almonds and garlic that typically comes from Andalusia. Follows an aromatic hot and cold Caprese, beautifully arranged with razor-thin slices of roasted bread on rectangular plates. The cold part is a tomato sorbet that justifiably receives some extra applause across the tables. For the main course, we have sous-vide cooked rump steak, perfectly à point, with crunchy green vegetables on chickpea puree, lavishly flavoured with cumin. And finally the dessert, another highlight: Basil Panna Cotta with strawberries, mildly seasoned with pepper and Balsamico. Every bite is a mouthful of the Mediterranean summer, genuine taste, every dish a colourful composition arranged with attention to detail, but never overdone. Seems everyone around me is as happy as I am, and that also includes the great selection of wine, Torsten’s domain. Trusting him blindly, he made me even try my first glass of Lambrusco ever since the heavy headache experiences in my long ago adolescent years.
My personal conclusion: This was a wonderful opener for the Summer of Supper, and I hope not the last project Sophie and Simone do together. Meanwhile, Marien-Eck will host another 2 rounds of the Summer of Supper next weekend on Friday 18th and Saturday 19th July. Some few places are still available. The price for the menu including water ranges between 35€ and 39€. A selection of wines per glass and bottle as well as beer, soft drinks and some long drinks are available at extra charge. More information on all forthcoming Summer of Supper events and tickets can be found on the Summer of Supper website and on Facebook.