Q & A with Executive Chef Daniel Stern and Beverage Impresario Doug Riddle
417 Magazine: How does Social on Patton differ from CB Social House?
Daniel Stern: Social is a bit more chef-driven. It’s certainly more creative based, and it’s got a broader vision than just Southern food, like CB Social House did. We’re very focused on trying to elevate things that people are familiar with.
Doug Riddle: We’re trying to delve a little bit deeper into stuff like wine, getting away from being so heavily focused on bourbon [and] moving toward more curated lists of things.
417: What informs your decision of what goes on the menu?
D.S.: We tend to trust our instincts a little bit. We certainly test everything, and there are times when we’ve come up with things we absolutely despised after making it, so it’s a constant adjustment. Certainly access to product is another one that really dictates what we’re going to have on the menu—seasonality. Also, guest feedback. In R&D, we really lean into the feedback that we get from that night, and we really take that into consideration.
D.R.: What we’ve learned a lot from CB is we’re not trying to put out dishes that alienate people. There’s a balance between creating things and making your customer happy.
417: What are your favorites?
D.S.: Mine is the salmon by far. There are simple ingredients involved with it, but when they all come together, it really makes that dish complex. And I love eggs—the poached egg on top. You could put a poached egg on cereal and it’d be good.
D.R.: I personally like the porchetta. It’s a dish I’ve had in my back pocket for a while. It was one of the most complicated dishes I attempted at home, [and] it’s something that I don’t see on menus a lot.