Atera restaurant opens with executive chef Matthew Lightner at the helm. Formerly of Portland, Oregon's acclaimed Castagna restaurant, Lightner combined his passion for foraging and progressive American dining to develop the menu. The intimate restaurant features a 13-seat, reservation-only dining bar, a five-seat table, and an open kitchen serving a regularly rotating 10-course tasting menu each night.
The open kitchen sets a stage for Lightner to execute his complex menu, which progresses seamlessly from small "snack" items such as Crispy Sunchoke Skins, Foie Gras "Peanuts," Pickles Aioli Quail Eggs and Duck Stock Crackers to main dishes, including Ragout of Fish Cheeks with seaweed butter and heirloom garlic; Cured Scallops with meringue, frozen juice and gin mash; Grilled Leeks with wheat grass, raw apple and leek ash; and BBQ Lamb Collar with sassafras, root beer and chicories. Desserts transition from a savory "Rock" of brownie butter dough filled with bergamot sorbet to sweeter courses, such as a Parsley Root Split with banana ice cream, homemade marshmallows, candied parsley root and freeze dried milk cake. Ingredients are locally and responsibly sourced, allowing Lightner to reflect the season, honor traceability and showcase the best of both popular and sometimes overlooked regional bounty.