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swirl and savor

Chef Thomas Wood's Chili Glazed Scallops

Beth Ribblett

Last week I had the pleasure of sitting at the grill bar at Maximo's tasting wines with Antonio, Michelle Gueydan (she's been consulting with them to update their wine list and work with the staff), manager Eric Solis and chef Thomas Woods.  Our fourth annual "Tre Bicchieri" Italian Wine dinner will be at Maximo's next month so we were tasting through a number of potential wines and chef Thomas prepared a few dishes and sauces to accompany them.

As we began with the whites, he impressed us immediately with one of his signature dishes, Chili Glazed Scallops.  The fresh, gigantic sea scallops were cooked to perfection and served atop a bed of sauteed spinach and pears.  Equally as gorgeous is the wine we choose to pair it with, the 2008 Castello della Sala Cervaro della Sala, a very Burgundian styled Chardonnay from Umbria.  So if this first course is any indication of what will follow for the next four, we are all in for an incredible evening!

We'll be finishing up the menu and pairings this week and I'll post the information as soon as it is confirmed.  But as a special treat, Chef Thomas has shared the recipe with us so you can give it a try yourself before hand or just wait 'til May 18th at 7pm!

Chili Glazed Scallops
Chef Thomas Woods, Maximo's Italian Grill

Chili Glaze:
1 Tablespoon Garlic, Minced
1 Tablespoon Crushed Red Pepper
1 Tablespoon Lemon Juice
1 Tablespoon Unsalted Butter
2 Tablespoon Pomace oil (though any neutral cooking oil will work)
1/2 cup Honey
1/4 cup Stock (Preferably fish, though chicken, shrimp, etc., will work)
1/4 cup White wine (Dry though whatever you’re drinking will work
just fine)
Pinch Salt to taste
Pinch Black Pepper to taste
4-2 ounces Diver Scallops
(seasoned and grilled)

Place oil, garlic and red pepper in a medium sauté pan on medium heat, making sure all ingredients are incorporated in the pan while in heating. Toast the garlic until golden brown. Deglaze pan with white wine, stock, honey and lemon juice. Incorporate ingredients in pan. Add butter, parsley, salt and pepper. Reduce contents in pan; sauce will visibly change (all bubbles will appear the same size). Drizzle glaze over the top of scallops.

Chef Woods serves this dish at Maximo’s accompanied with a pear and baby spinach sauté. Serves 2.