It’s like Buttah
Adding craft butter to your menu offers guests even more flavors—and your revenue streams
Butter. It’s not something people seek out at dinner, but if it accompanies a loaf of bread, they’ll eat it. And with the advent of better-quality bread programs, more chefs are stepping up their craft butter game.
At Alter in Miami, chef Bradley Kilgore serves “umami butter” with sumac and dill seed-crusted bread. Chicago’s RPM Steak serves rosemary Nordic butter with Parker House rolls and prosciutto butter with cheddar popovers. And at Tied House, a newer restaurant in Chicago’s Lakeview neighborhood, chef Debbie Gold devotes an entire section to butters and spreads.
Gold offers a $5 bread selection featuring Parker House rolls, seeded rye and honey oat porridge bread that comes with a rich, creamy butter from Wisconsin’s Pine River Dairy. For guests who want to enhance their experience, they can add $6 bone marrow butter, $3 whipped lardo and $4 green tomato marmalade. While it is more expensive, think of it as another appetizer.
“It goes back to my philosophy of taking the ordinary and making it exceptional,” says Gold, who is a James Beard Award winner. “If I’m going to offer bread, it’s going to be really good and I’m going to offer really good butter. And that stands out.”
At Detroit steakhouse Prime + Proper, executive chef Ryan Prentiss has a “sauces + butters” section on his menu, including porcini caraway butter, white anchovy herb butter and roasted garlic ash butter. Initially meant to top steaks, Prentiss quickly realized the butters, which he charges between $4 and $5 each for 2.5 ounces, could work with a variety of items, including bread
“The beautiful thing about the butters, guests use them as they please,” Prentiss says. “Offering craft butters gives the guest some
And who doesn’t want some extra delicious butter with whatever they’re eating?