A cream cheese cake served as an appropriate way for Meaghan Coltrain to introduce herself to hungry Hermannites earlier this summer.
Coltrain recently began work as culinary communications specialist for The Inn at Hermannhof, Hermannhof Winery, and Blackshire Distillery, and will soon have other oversight duties on behalf of the businesses' hospitality team, in conjunction with new Director of Hospitality Georgie Busch. She started the job in August, and has moved with her husband Brian; and children Delilah, 5, and Ruby, 3, to Hermann. Brian will be executive chef at a rebranded concept of the Tin Mill Steakhouse. The steakhouse has closed, with a scheduled soft opening Friday for the location's rebranding as The Grainery.
"It will be more focused on German-inspired fare," said Coltrain of plans for The Grainery, which will emphasize lunch and dinner.
To help with the community introduction, Coltrain participated in a Hermannhof Summer Social on Aug. 21 at the distillery, fulfilling her dual task as Hermannhof's new pastry chef. That activity followed her Aug. 18 appearance on Food Network's dessert-themed Chopped Sweets in New York City, where she competed against other chefs in creating various confections for a panel of judges. She had most recently worked as executive pastry chef for the Niche Food Group in St. Louis.
"I would've loved to have won," she said, noting she thoroughly enjoyed the experience of being on the show. "The competition was intense."
A hundred guests -- including Hermann Mayor Bruce Cox -- watched the "American As Apple Pie"
episode featuring Coltrain, who made the cream cheese cake for them and with Brian providing a special treat.
"It was such a good feeling," Coltrain said about her impressions of the reception.
For the time being, Coltrain's chores include preparing daily breakfasts from scratch for the Inn's guests.
"We've been working really hard," she said of efforts by herself and staff. Her duties also include coordinating events with Busch that will include weddings that will feature an intimate flair. There's already talk of themed events that will feature Harry Potter and the popular game Clue.
"I want the community to be involved," she said of her planning, adding she intends to highlight local ingredients in her meals and work with Hermann businesses toward creating support for the community.