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The Fox Valley Club brings Quality to Country Club Cuisine

Updated on January 30, 2019
Sam Cardinale profile image

Sam is a hospitality specialist. From the bottom, Sam had worked his way through every tier in customer service and restaurant dining.

The Crab Cake- 100% Fresh Crab Meat accompanied with a Lobster and Shrimp Sauce. No Filler.
The Crab Cake- 100% Fresh Crab Meat accompanied with a Lobster and Shrimp Sauce. No Filler. | Source

The Missing Link within Country Clubs

If there is one thing that Western New York's Country Club scene needs, it's an improvement on food quality and staff. We have all heard the excuse of "the market" being the reason why Country Clubs are hurting for membership, but the real reason is that Members are tired of paying Membership Dues and Monthly Minimums for substandard food served by unprofessional staff. It's simple; people want what they pay for.

The Fox Valley Club, located in Lancaster, NY, has taken the necessary steps to bring its members an experience worthy of membership. One of those steps was hiring Head Chef Jonathon Diati.

Head Chef Jonathon Diati brings his many years of experience to the members of The Fox Valley Club with his Italian/Southern U.S. inspired Cuisine
Head Chef Jonathon Diati brings his many years of experience to the members of The Fox Valley Club with his Italian/Southern U.S. inspired Cuisine | Source

The Chefs Style is Established Through His Bio

Raised in an Italian household, Diati forever carries and utilizes the nostalgic styles of his Grandmothers cooking: True Authentic Italian. Starting off as a dishwasher, Diati has paid his culinary dues while working his way up the food chain. After spending a number of years in culinary school and working his way through the cutthroat ranks of the best restaurants (ex. Diati was acting Chef de partie at Tristan) in Charleston, SC (The Mecca of Southern Style Cuisine), Diati has held on to his roots while developing a style of cooking that is both very simple and very impressive. Diati has gained the skills of running a kitchen efficiently, and successfully delivers his blended style of Authentic Italian/Southern U.S. cuisine which he coins: "New Age Soul Food"

The Dining Experience

The Dining Experience that The Fox Valley Club and Chef Jonathon Diati provided was bar-raising. The Fox Valley Club has just set a standard that Country Clubs in the Western New York area will have no choice but to compete with. The pictures and explanations of the setting and food below only do so much justice to the experience, as the taste will have to be enjoyed in person.

The Setting:

The Fox Valley Club Dining Room
The Fox Valley Club Dining Room | Source

Recently updated, The Fox Valley Club has improved their dining and bar area into a comfortable, beautiful space. Overlooking the golf course, the dining and banquet areas are also the perfect place to hold weddings and private parties. The Director of Membership, Marie McConnell, is a well reputed party organizer, and should be on the contact list for any banquet needs.

The seats are both firm and relaxing, ensuring that the entire meal is enjoyed without discomfort. Both the silverware and the water glasses are polished. The napkins are folded nicely and evenly across the dining floor. The attention to detail is noticeable. F&B Director Greg Diehl, like Chef Diati, also has an impressive resume, managing popular restaurants from Lewiston to Buffalo. It is clear that his attention to detail is represented well by the staff.

The Appetizer:

The Crab Cake
The Crab Cake | Source

Kicking off the meal is the Crab Cake. The Crab Cake is no joke, as it's all fresh lump crab, no filler. The real star of this dish, though, is the sauce. The sauce is created over a two day process, as roasted lobster bodies and shrimp shells are reduced down, twice, accompanying heavy cream in the second reduction. The presentation of the dish, texture of the Crab Cake, and flavor of the sauce blend together into what can only be described as true comfort food.

The Salad:

The Duck Confit Salad
The Duck Confit Salad | Source

The Duck Confit Salad is a beautiful dish, with a flavor profile to match. The duck is cured for a full day in aromatics and herbs before it is cooked in its own fat. The duck is accompanied by slices of pear, grilled with a mint syrup, then rested on a bitter greens salad with goat cheese, toasted almonds, and dressed with a sharp sherry vinaigrette. Paired with a sweet white wine such as a Pinot Gris or Riesling, The Duck Confit Salad is the perfect choice for a lighter dish that's packed with flavor and content.

The Entree:

The BBQ Hanger Steak over Authentic Argentinian Chimichurri
The BBQ Hanger Steak over Authentic Argentinian Chimichurri | Source

The BBQ Hanger Steak is a dish that is prepared with an authentic Argentinian recipe. The hanger is first charred on a grill with a house made barbecue rub, then placed on a bed of grilled fingerling potatoes and asparagus. The real magic of this dish is the attendance of the authentic Argentinian chimichurri sauce. Diati credits this recipe to his Argentinian friend Valentina Garcia Montano, a former co-worker of his while working at Tempo in downtown Buffalo, another incredible dining establishment.

The steak tastes as good as it looks, as the juices from the meat blend with the chimichurri and the texture being both slightly chewy yet extremely tender. The chimichurri is the most fresh, delicious, and authentic chimi in all of Western New York, and it is exciting that a Country Club manages to be the place to not only offer it, but serve it with a steak of this flavor.

The Dessert:

White Chocolate Banana Bread Pudding
White Chocolate Banana Bread Pudding | Source

Last and certainly not least, the star of the show, The White Chocolate Banana Bread Pudding. If you think that name is a mouthful, then you haven't tried this dish. This is a labor intensive dish, as the sauce takes about 45 minutes to make with constant attention. The sauce is a slow cooked custard spiked with Jim Beam bourbon. The banana bread pudding is baked in a warm water bath, bruleed, then placed next to a scoop of vanilla bean ice cream on top of the Jim Beam custard. The warm white chocolate banana bread pudding and sauce blend incredibly with the vanilla bean ice cream to give you one of the most flavorful desserts you wil ever try.

Final Notes

When asked about the future golf season and and the remainder of 2019, Chef Diati had this to say: "From sandwiches to steaks, it's the best food forward. I cannot wait for the upcoming golf season to create food for both the members who are dining and the golfers making the turn. I'm looking forward to providing something convenient and tasty for the players too."

The Fox Valley Club is making its mark in the WNY Country Club circuit by blending together the top three most important things that members are looking for:

1. A beautifully maintained golf course

2. A professional staff

3. High quality food

Services of this quality makes any membership fee more than worth it.

© 2019 Sam Cardinale


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