Article by Debra Freeman
Photography by Fitz
Lead photo of Chef David Hannah cooking in the Stoley’s Kitchen
Award-winning Hampton Roads based Chef David Hannah is adding yet another entry to his culinary resume. Chef Hannah has won the first Nomarama Burger Battle, made Southern Grit’s 2017 Best Bites List, and was one of the leading chefs chosen to create a dish for the inaugural Stirring the Pot dinner; now he is spearheading cocktail dinners that reveal his culinary dexterity. This weekend Hannah will be helming the by reservation only Svedka vodka dinner at Stoley’s in Virginia Beach.
On January 20, Hannah’s four course meal comes with mini cocktails, and has an “elevated brunch theme.” The delectable menu includes Japanese souffle style pancake with champagne jelly and maple syrup, potato-crushed rockfish with braised greens, Coca-Cola braised pork cheek over grits topped with cracklin’s, and chicken and waffles ice cream with a Belgium waffle.
The four types of Svedka vodka that accompany each dish are mango pineapple, strawberry lemonade, traditional, and cucumber.
A similar spirits dinner was held in December, but with bourbon instead of vodka. At the time of publication, only two seats for this Saturday’s dinner at 6pm are available and one seat is left for the 8:30pm seating; tickets are $45 per person. With the bourbon dinner quickly selling out and the vodka dinner only having three seats left, a third cocktail dinner is in the works.
Hannah noted that these dinners showcase “great food for social gatherings, and also gets regulars excited about new things I like to experiment with…this is a good outlet to do some new techniques and show off my skill set.”