For the past two years, a sourdough starter, or mother, has been hanging out in the kitchen at Tilth. The kitchen staff feeds her three times a day, and named her (what else) Your Mom. She was purely for staff use until about four weeks ago, when Maria Hines's eldest restaurant debuted a sourdough waffle on its brunch menu.
Executive chef Jason Brzozowy says a sourdough waffle is more complex than a traditional version. "It's definitely got a little tang to it; we do add some sugar, so it's not completely savory."
His kitchen team had long wanted to make a waffle with Your Mom. "Luckily Cheffy loves to buy us toys for the kitchen," says Brzozowy. Cheffy would be Hines, and when the staff made their waffle interest known, she supplied them with a hotshot contraption that can crank out 60 an hour.
However Your Mom isn't as readily available as the Surly Gourmand would have you believe. Despite the badass kitchen gadgetry, the waffles are available in limited quantities (and only on Saturdays and Sundays). Making the batter is a two-day process, that starts with feeding the mother and letting it sit out overnight to proof. Currently Brzozowy guesstimates how much batter to make based on the number of brunch reservations. If Tilth starts running out, the restaurant will ask diners to call ahead to reserve a waffle.
Right now the $12 waffle is topped with Billy's peaches, vanilla honey, powdered sugar, and peach whipped cream. The Tilth kitchen puts the whipped cream in a charger so the result is just as fluffy as an old-school Waffle House version, but way classier. The restaurant is soliciting Facebook input on what toppings people want to see, and the most-requested version will become a reality on the Tilth brunch menu for the entirety of November.
Right now, an Old Fashioned waffle is leading the pack. That would be Old Fashioned as in the cocktail. Brozozowy's not exactly sure what form that would take, but he's not fazed: "It's an amazing idea; there are so many directions we could go."