Eduardo Garcia

Read about a magical weekend with the inspirational chef from Bozeman, Montana making craft cocktails, pasta from scratch and learning about Eduardo Garcia’s incredible journey from private yacht chef to Emmy nominated adventure seeker.

Chef Eduardo Garcia pounding beef carpaccio

The Spirit of Adventure and Generosity-

Got to be honest,

I was watching the Magnolia Network last year and saw Chef Eduardo’s show, Big Sky Kitchen and thought- “dang it- someone in Montana beat me to a creating a cooking show”.

a group of people watching Chef Eduardo Garcia prepare fresh crepes

But- after watching the entire series and the moving documentary about his accident in 2011- you cannot help but cheer for this young chef and his accomplishments . Imagine how excited I was when on his Instagram popped up with a Weekend of Food and Music at the Lodges on Seeley Lake only two hours from my home in Northwest Montana.

  • a large cast iron pan filled with rosemary covered focaccia dough
  • a wooden bowl filled with blue born and green eggs
  • a sliced lemon on a platter of romaine lettuce

I joined 20 other guests from Oklahoma to Oregon for this extraordinary weekend to learn from Chef Eduardo and his team. What a privilege to learn, watch and be in his company. Most dinners of this type, the chef might come out, go over the menu, say hello, but Eduardo organized this weekend (with the prodding of the staff at The Lodge), so he could really get to know his guests, what they like and share his passion for foraging, hunting and cooking.

a mezcal cocktail garnished with mint and lemon in a glass next to a plate of crepes and a fork

Kind of a Big Deal…

One of my favorite moments from the weekend was the Lodge manager, Vicki shared a story of how she was explaining to the owners of the Lodge about Eduardo. The owners, not being familiar with Eduardo’s show or documentary, Charged, needed a little convincing to invest in the Weekend. Vicki explained, “I told them (the owners), he was kind of a big deal.”

And sure enough, as the guests began to arrive, Eduardo and his team learned his show, Big Sky Kitchen had just been nominated for a Daytime Emmy award. Yup- he’s kind of a big deal.

an announcement reading the nominees for the 2024 daytime Emmys.

How it began- hospitality and cocktails…

I was greeted at the Lodge with fresh flowers, a spectacular suite overlooking Seeley Lake and a basket filled with goodies for breakfast. I ordered the steel cut oats. Chef provided a large mason jar of chai and turmeric seasoned apples for the oats, plus Vicki brought huckleberry scones and rhubarb muffins warm from the oven to my door. We also had fresh butter, local Montana cherry jam and coffee.

The first evening Chef created a cocktail of mezcal and roasted grapefruit and he made fireside crepes with lavender ice cream and a huckleberry coulis. So good.

a small cardboard container of spotted tan and black quail eggs being opened by chef Eduardo Garcia

Here for the Food…

The morning of Day 2, we made our own breakfast en suite. Each room or cabin has a full kitchen and coffee maker. Guests who ordered the Old Salt bacon and eggs raved about the pork. I may have mis-ordered- the bacon wafting from the other rooms was tempting.

After our hearty breakfast, chef and his team had a pappardelle workshop. We divided into teams of 4 and everyone made pasta with flour from Highland Harmony Farms in Wilsall, Montana. Sadie, the farm owner talked about her regenerative farm practices and the heirloom wheat and buckwheat she grows on her farm. Her semolina flour was the key to keep our pasta from sticking.

Then chef brought out a sourdough focaccia for us to dimple and cover with his homegrown rosemary and loads of flakey salt.

a bag of heirloom flour from Highland Harmony farm and several jars of spices on a glass table

Soup & Salad with a View…

Keeping true to his foraging and hunting roots, Eduardo Garcia created a thick and creamy carp soup with a massive crouton and cheese, a watercress salad served with a game carppacicio of elk, moose and white tail deer Eduardo harvested himself. We had crispy oat cookies for dessert and then it was off to explore the area, sit by the outdoor fire pit, paddle board on the lake or take in an afternoon siesta.

a white square platter of wild watercress on top of wild game carpaccio harvested by Eduardo Garcia

Family Dinner with New Friends…

Dinner was so special. About 20 strangers from all over the country by dinner time were exchanging phones numbers, Instagram info and addresses. The staff at the Lodge transformed the dining room into a woodland wonder with Larch balls, antlers and pine boughs from the grounds.

After screening the pasta episode , “Spaghetti Western” from Big Sky Kitchen, Chef Eduardo Garcia spoke about his passion for feeding folks, living off the land, foraging and taking in every bit of life he had been given after his accident. His enthusiasm is infectious.

Dinner was served family style- platters of jalapeño Caesar salads, the Highland Harmony Farm sourdough focaccia now crispy with olive oil and salt and the incredible khorasan pappardelle pasta we all made with slow roasted Old Salt beef shank ragu.

Red wine flowed throughout the meal. Finally, we were treated to table side creme brûlée with berries and apple butter.

a dinner plate with a recipe card on it from a dinner with chef Eduardo Garcia

Cowboy Poet sings for his supper…

While dessert was served in the main gathering room of the lodge, complete with a two-story stone fireplace, we enjoyed the wisdom of cowboy poet/singer, Sterling Drake. His soulful songs of love and the cowboy way of life could not have been a more perfect ending to the evening.

Click here to listen to Sterling sing a melancholy Irish tune, Rye Whiskey.

Cowboy poet Sterling Drake

Fare thee well…and where to find out more about Eduardo Garcia:

Breakfast Sunday morning was huevos racheros, sourdough griddle cakes, maple syrup, juices and loads of fresh pastries from a local bakery. All too special . It was finally time to leave. Hugs and memories as I drove back home.

If you have the opportunity to dine with Chef Eduardo Garcia, grab it. He will be cheffing at the Old Salt Music Festival in Ovando, Montana June 21-23rd. Click HERE to learn more.

pancakes being cooked on a antique cast iron griddle

Many thanks to Vicki at the Lodge on Seeley Lake, Chef Eduardo Garcia, Isabell Kuhn, Sadie Collins of Highland Harmony Farms, Sterling Drake and the entire staff of the Lodge.

the author and chef Eduardo Garcia in front of a breakfast table of pancakes and batter

Read more about my Adventures in Montana:

Dining in Glacier National Park

19 Best Places to visit when Glacier National Park is too crowded.

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