If you’re hungry and ready to wax nostalgic—boy, do we have a surprise for you. Ever-creative chef Joe West—whose elevated eats have helped put The Savoy back on the culinary map—has just unleashed a brand-new menu. One of his new entrees is a tried-and-true TV dinner, but West has created his own upscale, take-and-bake version. ($18)
We caught up with West to find out why he’s going into the way-back machine and why people are going bonkers over his newest DIY dinner.
I’m obsessed with your new TV dinners, Chef. How did that come about?
“I was excited to come back with a new menu for The Savoy—and we’re offering the whole menu for carry out. But I saw so many other restaurants having fun and being creative with their take-out, so I really wanted to think of something for us. I actually have been meal prepping a ton at home—and this just totally made sense, to offer people some flexibility with their meals. Give them that opportunity to have some interaction with their food was important and also creating something easy to do—but tasty as well.”
More importantly, what has response been?
“The response has been incredible. People are going nuts over these and I’m really loving that people are interacting with me on Instagram, documenting their experiences with the TV dinners. I’ve been doing videos (on Instagram) from my own home kitchen to show people how easy it is to pop up in their oven for dinner. It’s been a lot of fun. And because I’m just warming up, I think more of my personality will come out as I do more of them.”
TV dinners are oh-so nostalgic. Was that your inspiration?
“I am a millennial poster child and I grew up begging for Kid Cuisines. They were awful, but I always craved them. Weird, right? These days we’re all watching more TV and I think now we’ve all had enough time to cook at home every night. (I’ve never washed so many dishes in my life.) I thought this would be a great opportunity to do something like this. I actually worked at restaurant in Denver, where we had ceramic, TV dinner-style trays for our bar menu. It was fun and we’d do upscale, hearty dishes for them. I’ve been wanting to do something like that for a long time and this was the perfect time to do a take-out version of that.”
So—what’s next? There’s an infinite amount of mix-and-match possibilities, yes?
“The team is having a lot of fun with the ideas. We’re all stoked about these. So far, we’re thinking a fancy Salisbury steak, enchiladas, Chicken à la King, mac and cheese, etc. We definitely want to go a little further outside of the box, but I think we can have some fun with old-school classics too.”
Have Savoy customers had any requests? If so, my vote is a spicy meatloaf, please.
“I’ve had some vegetarian requests and that’s definitely in the works. Spicy meatloaf will need to make it on there! We’ll call it the M2 Meat Loaf! Hey, there’s an idea. We could start dedicated the dishes to people and name it after them!”