By Michael Welch
If you drive by a farmer in Rochester, chances are good they are on their way to drop off food at Lento, the restaurant in the Village Gate that opened in 2007 and has consistently turned local produce into one of the most delicious meals available.
Art Rogers, the owner and chef of Lento, has earned his “friend of the farmer” status by taking the extra steps needed to get the best produce for his customers. Early Saturday mornings you can find him at the Rochester Public Market, his cart filled with meats and vegetables that he’ll take back to the restaurant for creating interesting dishes like a tartare of local lamb with harissa aioli, or crispy skin duck breast with house-cured pancetta.
Speaking of homecured, Rogers insists on making many of the kitchen essentials himself, including breads, pastas, sausages, patés, and even ice creams. Lento may be Italian for “slow” but Art Rogers and his kitchen crew are clearly leading the pack of chefs eager to make a difference by supporting our local farmers and putting their products on your plate.
274 N. Goodman Street, Rochester; 585.271.3470; lentorestaurant.com
This article originally appeared in the Spring 2010 issue with the title LOCAL HERO WINNER Chef/Restaurant: Lento.