High Rock welcomes our newest employee and fresh food fanatic, Joshua Thalacker. Josh has been hired on as the restaurant manager after he recently graduated from University of Wisconsin Whitewater with a degree in General Management and all the necessary skills to make him a tasty fit for the job ahead.
This opportunity really is served up close to home because Josh graduated in 2011 from Wisconsin Dells High School and would tell you he’s “been eating this fantastic food for years.” Josh is a family man and loves to take his unbelievably adorable daughter named Nora to the Deer Park on his days off with his fiancé Stevi Sorenson. Saying we are excited does not come close to how thrilled we are to see all of Josh’s ideas unfold within the walls and beyond of High Rock Café.
Josh Thalacker comes with a distinct passion for the type of work he is doing and strives to work toward an atmosphere that allows for more stories to be told, vital memories for customers to make, and for people to be raving about more than just what happens in our kitchen for years to come. “I feel super excited and blessed to have an opportunity to work for one of my favorite restaurants in town,” he says with a huge smile on his face. When asked what his favorite High Rock delicacy was he boasted about our favorite Rio Grande Wrap and to top that he always makes sure to ask for a side of the garlic tator tots.
The Carnivorus tour – starting January 7th at the High Rock Café: a tour of beef, exploring nine different cuts, over nine a week period. Chef Justin Draper wanted to experiment and offer the community something new and different. For the next nine weeks the High Rock kitchen will focus on a section of beef and create three unique dishes each week. The goal of this endeavor is to inform the clientele about the wide variety of flavors and cuts that are available to them. “We are very familiar with 20% of the certain cuts of the beef,” Justin says, “but there is another 80% that few have heard of let alone, cooked.” For example the shoulder tender is a great buy from your butcher, coming in around five dollars a pound where as filet mignon is $24 a pound. It has a lot of the same qualities, shape, and is very similar in a lot of ways for a fraction of the price . This is just one of the many points Chef Justin Draper is hoping to highlight through the Carnivorous tour.
Justin also hopes that people will venture to the High Rock Facebook page and blog for new cooking tips and information that he wants to create as part of this educational outreach. “Cooking is fun and I hope all the aspiring chefs and foodies out there will take advantage of this opportunity to expand their culinary horizon. I love to keep learning myself and that’s also what spawned this idea exploring the possibilities of what’s available.”
As a way to make this epicurean adventure fun, the High Rock will be offering prizes to those who attend the Carnivorous tour. A punch card will be available that briefly outlines the beginning and ending of each week and the cut of meat highlighted. If you go to 1-3 weeks you receive a drink koozie, 4-6 weeks is a $10 gift certificate and 7-9 you receive a High Rock cutting board. “Wisconsin winters can be long and we wanted to give locals a fun activity to enjoy here in the Dells.” Justin explained.
The Carnivorous Tour starts January 8th and ends March 10th. The regular lunch and dinner menu will still be available but the Season’s Freshest Menu will be taken over with Carnivorous Tour fare. A tour in beef might seem to favor only one type of clientele but in classic High Rock style the three creations will appeal to all foodies. The pricing as well, is meant to reach to all customers, it’s quite possible to attend all nine weeks for around $100. So if you or anyone you know enjoys cooking or creative cuisine, head over to High Rock this winter, we look forward to taking you on this delicious journey that is sure to delight any carnivore.