Jim Hayes, owner of Bistro Soleil restaurant in Hightstown, is a busy bee.
Not only does he run his restaurant and catering business, he is also hard at work sourcing produce from local farms and the Hightstown wholesale produce market for his Nostrano line of foods. (That’s the Tri-County Co-Operative Auction Market, no website found but info. on past year is available at http://www.eat-drinknj.com/news_Coop.htm).
Of course, local products are also used in the restaurant, and this summer he’s planning a series of Jersey Fresh dinners for his devoted clientele. (Read my Packet review.)
Chef Hayes will also be at many of the area farmers markets in the coming months with the Nostrano products, so be sure to check his website for details.
Some of the products he is currently making are: flavored oils and vinegars, roasted garlic paste, basil pesto, mint pesto, mandarin chili marmalade (I just picked up a jar of that; he serves it with salmon in the restaurant), plus apple butter (one staff member’s absolute favorite), and cranberry sauce.
Jim is also making concentrated stocks as an alternative to the sodium laden bases you normally find in the market. And he makes homemade soups, sauerkraut, and sweet & sour pepper-onion relish.
Like I said, a busy bee!