- Courtesy Of Aaron Martin
- Admiral Steve's Chicken at Umami | Umami in Stowe
Aaron Martin, chef-owner of Plate in Stowe, opened a second restaurant a few doors down last week: Umami, at 151 Main Street, Unit 5.
Designed for the pandemic takeout trend, Umami is an Asian restaurant that specializes in Cantonese and Sichuan food. Silas Tanner, Martin's sous chef at Plate, left that position to run the kitchen at the new restaurant.
Martin has wanted to renovate the space that is now Umami for some time, he said, but wasn't sure what type of restaurant to put there. The solution, it turned out, was working with him at Plate. Tanner was a cook at the original location of Chinese favorite A Single Pebble, founded in Berlin by chef Steve Bogart.
"I love to eat Asian food, and I don't know how to cook it," Martin, 36, said. "Silas knows how to cook it. A lot of the motivation for this was to build a space for me to learn how to cook a new cuisine."
Working with Tanner is sous chef Dusty Berard, who trained in Bogart's Berlin kitchen in his teen years. More recently, Berard ran a weekly Chinese pop-up dinner from Kismet in Montpelier, where he was a cook.
"Those two are working hand in hand to get this running," said Martin, who lives in his hometown of Hyde Park. "I'm trying to learn as we go."
Umami's menu includes a chicken dish named for Bogart, Admiral Steve's Chicken, prepared with citrus oil, tangy sweet sauce and broccoli. Among the big dishes are black bean salmon with greens; and tofu with pork belly, chiles and wild mushrooms. Cold dishes include sesame noodles and lightly smoked cucumbers with red peppers and rice vinegar.
"The food has absolutely been fantastic," Martin said. "The boys are knocking it out of the park."
Umami is open for takeout Thursday through Monday, 5 to 9 p.m. Call 253-4177 to order.