Vincenzo Loverso, executive chef and owner of Greystone, located in downtown San Diego, grew up with the passion for cooking. His mom inspired him to utilized seasonal ingredients when cooking. After moving from Italy to the states, he started out in the kitchen and immediately moved his way up. His passion for cooking eventually inspired people to take interest in opening up restaurants with him. We talked with chef Vincenzo about his flavorful elk dish and his journey leading up to being a restaurant owner.
Pictured: Elk Chop with Porcini rubbed, coriander blackberry, cauliflower saffron purée and crispy kale.
What's the story behind this dish?
Elk chop has been on Greystone's dinner menu for over 16 years. We have changed the preparation over the years based on what's fresh seasonally, but it has been the same cut which is the chop.
What's the key component to this dish?
The porcini which is rubbed in and the coriander blackberry reduction. The way elk is prepared greatly influences its flavor. We recommend keeping the flavors simple and not over cooking.
Describe the taste?
We serve our game with a flair. You're ordering an unique cut of meat and we want you to taste the game.
What's a good beer, wine or cocktail to pair with this dish?
Syrah, Zinfandel or Pinot Noir pair well with this dish. Or one of our handcrafted cocktails. We recommend the Blackberry Sidekick.
What do you like about elk?
If you’ve been lucky enough to have a tender, lean elk chop, you definitely need to try it . It is lower in fat and higher in protein than beef or chicken. Our grass-fed elk aren’t treated with any antibiotics, hormones or steroids. Their meat is an excellent source of iron, phosphorus and zinc. In fact, since most Americans exceed the recommended daily allowance of fats established by the American Heart Association, elk meat is a healthy, delicious alternative to other meats.Compared to traditionally raised livestock, elk eat the majority of their diet from native grasses,
trees and brush instead of rich grains. This creates very lean, healthful meat for elk steaks and
elk jerky. Our free-range, 100% grass-fed elk meat is unlike any red meat you’ve experienced before! It’s naturally lower in fat and calories than grain fed meat and is an excellent source of omega 3 fatty acids and cla or “good fats.” These good fats help fight an array of diseases from heart disease to cancer. Our 100% free-range elk meat comes to you directly from our grassland
pastures in Wyoming.
What kind of experience will a diner get at Greystone Steakhouse?
You are the captain of the ship, you tell us what your needs are and we will customize an experience based on your needs. But either way, we will build this bond through our relationship with our guests and will assure the guest an unforgettable experience.
About Vincenzo Loverso
Are you from San Diego?
I'm from Sicily. I have been in San Diego over 25 years.
Did you always want to be a chef growing up?
I started in a family of four in a small town in Sicily / Bageria. My grandma was raised in World War II and we were very conservative. I started working at a bakery at the age of 12 and the rest of my food journey is history.
What has your journey been like leading up to becoming a restaurant owner?
It took persistence and determination, even through tough times.
What is your favorite dish on Greystone's menu?
Buffalo because it's a lean game and sweeter than regular beef.
What motivates you as a chef?
My mom was a great cook and she inspired me as a young man. I always challenge myself to make some of my mom's sauces such as her tomato sauce.
What do you feel is the biggest challenge when it comes creating new dishes?
To see what's in seasonally and to stay fresh and flavorful, even in lower produce seasons. I always make seasonal menus.
When you're not coming up with delicious dishes, what do you enjoy doing in your spare time?
I own a few horses at the Del Mar racetrack. I breed, own and enjoy my race horses.
Anything new on the horizon at Greystone or your other restaurants?
We are staying on top of trends and always striving to give our customers exactly what they