Interview: Beacon Hill Hotel & Bistro

by Michele Pesula Kuegler | March 2nd, 2012 | Chef Interviews

After enjoying a fine Sunday evening of fondue and dinner, I was interested to learn more about the Beacon Hill Hotel & Bistro.  With its cozy dining and bar atmosphere, excellent service, and delicious food, it was certain to have owners that appreciate all aspects of a great dining experience.  I was able to speak with Peter and Cecilia Rait, owners of BHHB.

TT:  What is you culinary mission in regards to the BHHB?

P&CR:  It’s simple really. We just want to serve fresh, hand-crafted, innovative and interesting French bistro food at reasonable prices. We’ve also placed a strong emphasis on sourcing local and organic products.  We like to do as much in-house as possible, from whole animal butchery, to baking bread, to making our own ice cream. We want our clients to anticipate their next visit before they even depart.

TT:  Your Fondue Sunday is a wonderful way to end the weekend. What inspired you to create this special night?

P&CR:  Having studied and worked in Switzerland, we are big fans of cheese fondue. Sundays often bring families and friends together in a restorative way. It seems to us that there are very few children, and very few adults, who are not big fans of cheese, of being involved in the cooking process, and of the fun of putting the two together (with fondue forks no less)!

TT:  How often do you plan on changing the menu?  Monthly, seasonally, etc?

P&CR:  We tend to make four to five overhauls of our menu annually according to the bounty of the seasons. We also make weekly micro adjustments based on changes in what may be momentarily available at the markets: special vegetable varieties, or certain fish which may be running.  Additionally, we run specials every night.  And we just began our culinary Tour de France, highlighting a different French region at dinner every two weeks from Monday through Thursday.

TT:  What menu item would you never want to remove?

P&CR:  One is our Beet Salad with local Farmer’s Cheese and another is our classic Steak Frites.  We have had these two favorite menu items since we opened back in 2000.  A third item, our roast chicken breast, will also never be removed.  We tried a completely different chicken dish, thinking it would be nice to offer our regulars something new — that barely lasted three months. As we live in the neighborhood, clients would stop us in the street, asking us to bring the “old” chicken back.  We love that passion.

TT:  What big plans are in the future for BHHB?

We are very excited about the “Tour de France” which began last week.  Also back is the spring season of our “Wine & Dine Mondays” series and there are so many exciting things for the hotel as well. Our rooms have all completely been re-done and there is really no better way to see the city for the first time, or from a new perspective than to come stay with us.

TT:  What’s next?

P&CR:  One thing is for sure — it will be in the What’s New page on our website and in our monthly newsletter!  We hope to see you there.

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