Two major members of the Blue Hill at Stone Barns team are leaving the celebrated restaurant in Pocantico Hills to start a farm-to-table pop-up project called Rooster and the Hen. Michael Gallina has worked as the chef de cuisine at Dan Barber's restaurant since 2011, and his wife Tara held a number of dining room positions throughout the years, including senior captain. Now they're hoping to bring a farm-to-table fine dining experience in the vein of Blue Hill to venues across the country. In November the duo will move to St. Louis — where Michael grew up — to establish a home base for Rooster and the Hen.
Michael tells Eater: "Dan [Barber] is my biggest influence for the next project. I believe very much in utilizing the whole farm, and it's how we should all eat in some way." Tara notes: "We met at Blue Hill. It's going to be part of our life forever in some ways. It was a very transformational experience for us." Last month, the Gallinas cooked at a fundraising dinner to support Edible Island Culinary Center in Stonington, ME. And on October 30, they will collaborate with chef Ted Corrado on a meal at the Drake Hotel in Toronto. Tara notes that they're "pretty open minded" about future pop-up dinners and events. Michael and Tara might eventually open a brick and mortar restaurant in the St. Louis area, but for now they're focussing on the short-term pop-ups and collaborations.