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April 30, 2007

News from Go Fish

Cooking for the Health of It

Victor Scargle


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          Just one look at 32-year-old Go Fish Chef Victor Scargle tells you he’s cooking for the health of it.  California born and bred, he took to the stoves and gardens of Go Fish upon discovering in founder Cindy Pawlcyn a true kindred spirit.  “This is my opportunity to work with someone who shares my feelings about food and life,” explains Victor.

            Ingredient-driven cooking is common talk these days.  For Victor, it shapes the very core of his kitchen.  While chefing at Julia’s Kitchen in Napa, he and garden curator Jeff Dawson formed a seamless alliance enabling them to source 80 percent of the restaurant’s summer produce from the COPIA gardens and 60 percent the balance of the year.

            At Go Fish his year-around garden harvest augments local farm produce deliveries and compliments the fish he and sushi chef Ken Tominaga receive fresh daily.  Victor and Ken work in tandem to offer parallel menus to locals and wine country visitors who immediately embraced a menu rich in fruits of the sea.

            Victor’s culinary skills were honed in the fast-paced kitchens of Michael Minna, Traci De Jardins and Doug Rodriguez to name a few.  In his new Napa Valley kitchen, he savors the rush of team spirit in an atmosphere of challenge and respect.  The challenge he speaks of is considerable at Go Fish where the aim is to have something for everyone day and night.

            While St. Helena’s population is just shy of 6,000, it is a culinary mecca.  Go Fish keeps the dining casual, while working to deliver:

    • A quick bite, be it a dozen oysters and a glass of Sancerre; a plate of sushi and a glass of sake or a bowl of noodles and a cup of green tea;
    • Special-occasion dinner for two in a quiet corner or for a crowd on the patio;
    • Fish dinner from salad to a wood-grilled seasonal catch alongside a seasonal vegetable and followed by one of a lush array of home-style desserts.

            French technique defines Victor’s Go Fish style.  The simplicity of a few bright flavors and a clean presentation are hallmarks of his cooking.

            The Go Fish menu is unquestionably “fish-centric” but meat lovers will find a few “no fish,” listings including:  Red Wattle Pork, Watson Farm Lamb and Reichert Farm Duck.

            Victor makes his home in Napa with his wife, Kimberly, who works for the Napa Conference and Visitor’s center and their toddler, Cameron. 

Posted by Pamela at April 30, 2007 3:07 PM| Share on Facebook | Napa Valley Dining

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