The Gray House's cabbage and cava salad: 50 Favorite Dishes, no. 40
As a countdown to the Best of the Twin Cities 2013, coming April 17, the Hot Dish is serving up 50 of our favorite local dishes.
E. Katie Holm Crunchy, cool, and complex: The Gray House's cabbage salad
Since chef Ian Gray, co-owner of the Gray House in Uptown, prides himself on using only up-to-the-minute, fresh, seasonal ingredients, his menu changes as often as Katy Perry's hair color. But his food is always fresh, well balanced, and often showcases the range of a single ingredient.
The key to keeping any dish interesting is focusing on the combination of textures, especially true of plates that are served cold. Gray's salad hits all the right notes and remains balanced and very tasty throughout. The crunchy cabbage plays unexpectedly well with sharp and creamy goat cheese, raw red onion, bits of mint, and the smattering of chili flakes that impart a bit of welcome heat to the salad. But the component that really brings everything together is the unique dressing, which has a base of cava -- a sparkling Spanish white wine. Gray uses it to make his own version of a champagne vinaigrette, which is nicely seasoned but still light and spritely thanks to the good dose of acid.
50 Favorite Dishes:
No. 50: Somos Peru's crema volteada
No. 49: Northbound Smokehouse & Brewpub's waffle battered chicken sandwich
No. 48: Namaste Cafe's bison mamacha
No. 47: MidNord's Argentinian empanadas
No. 46: Krungthep's Thai sausage
No. 45: Eat Shop's shrimp salad
No. 44: Icehouse's savory eclair
No. 43: Cajun 2 Geaux's beignets
No. 42: A Cupcake Social's dulce de leche cupcake
No. 41: French Hen's Creole biscuits and gravy