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Good Chops: May Foodie Dave Foegley

If the herb-crusted pork chop or duck liver pâté at Peterson’s taste familiar, it might be because a longstanding champion of local gastronomy is in charge of the kitchen. Dave Foegley, the former executive chef at legendary Peter’s Restaurant & Bar, arrived at the popular Fishers dinner spot last July, bringing a few seasonal favorites from the old Peter’s menu with him.Having also worked for more than a decade as the executive chef of St. Elmo Steak House, only cooking for the occasional wine dinner, Foegley got a full schooling on producing food in volume and working with lots of staff support. But being at Peterson’s lets him do what he enjoys most. “Being back in a restaurant kitchen lets me express who I am and how I do things,” he says.
A Northern Indiana native who grew up helping bake cookies and make roasts at family holiday feasts, Foegley got his start at Peter George’s Carriage House restaurant in South Bend, later moving to Indianapolis to work under chef Tony Hanslits when George opened his original Peter’s in Fountain Square. “We were changing the menu as much as every week,” Foegley recalls. Times have evolved, as more area producers have stepped forward to provide great ingredients for Indy menus. But some things never change. “There’ll be an uproar if you take certain things off the menu,” he says. Don’t worry, fans of Peterson’s portobello fries. “You can’t always reinvent the wheel.”

DAVE FOEGLEY’S FAVORITE THINGS

(1) Tequila. “I love to savor it with a cigar.”
(2) Gunthorp Farms pork. “Their Duroc pork chops have the fat you need for flavor.”

(3) FoxGardin Kitchen & Ale in Fortville. “Comfort food done very well.”

(4) Dexter Chinese Cleaver. “I got mine through Zoll Brothers 25 years ago, and it’s been great. You take care of the stuff you get.”

Bonus: Foegley’s recipe for Grilled Duck Breast with Port Wine Glaze.

A graduate of IU’s Master of Fine Arts program in creative writing, Terry Kirts hails from a town in Illinois so small it didn’t have a restaurant until he was in the 8th grade. Since 2000, he’s more than made up for the dearth of eateries in his childhood, logging hundreds of meals as the dining critic for WHERE Indianapolis, Indianapolis Woman, and NUVO before joining Indianapolis Monthly as a contributing editor in 2007. A senior lecturer in creative writing at IUPUI, Terry has published his poetry and creative nonfiction in a number of literary journals and anthologies, including Gastronomica, Alimentum, and Home Again: Essays and Memoirs from Indiana, and he’s the author of the poetry collection To the Refrigerator Gods, published by Seven Kitchens Press in 2011.
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