Imagine you’re in Chicago enjoying a Michelin Star-quality meal at Entente. You’ve got the perfect wine pairing to go with your visually stunning and palate pleasing dishes while the perfect soundtrack wafts from the speakers throughout the dining room, heightening the whole experience.
What’s playing to complete such a scenario? An orchestral arrangement from Bach? Perhaps the soothing sounds of Coltrane fit the scene? Nope. Try the neck-snapping stylings of ASAP Ferg’s “New Level” instead.
See at Entente, Chef Brian Fisher infuses as much energy from his playlist into the place as much as he does flavor into his impeccably seared scallops. Fisher’s love of hip hop follows him everywhere, and that includes the kitchen. This edition of Sound Bites melds the unlikely duo of fine dining and bombastic beats in a marriage that works as surprisingly well as tamarind and foie gras.
Photo: Isabelli Media Relations
It’s all about keeping the energy up, and these songs get me in the place that I like to be when I’m cooking. I don’t talk a lot. I let the music speak for me for the most part. Sometimes literally. Its more about the vibe.
I’ve had the pleasure of meeting a lot of these artists and cooking for some of them as well, so it creates a much more personal connection to these songs.Ultimately, it comes down to keeping the energy level up, not only during the prep hours through the day, but dinner service as well, especially since the kitchen is open here, and the music is played throughout the restaurant. Granted, some of these songs are daytime only, but the artists still make it into heavy rotation in the evening playlists. Another aspect to the music here is to take people out of their comfort zone, somewhat. We could play Top 40 hits or whatever, but that doesn’t serve what we are trying to do, which in the end, is to get people to let their guard down and open up to new experiences. For the most part it works, and people kind of forget about the music, in a sense, and are immersed in not only what they’re eating but the experience that they’re sharing.
Getting hyped over some chawanmushi is an understandable moment, really. So who can blame Fisher for throwing on some Mobb Deep and feeling some type of way over being awarded a Michelin Star. It’s the perfect pairing.