Smokin' Pots

Chef Gavin Mills spreads the love with his own line of potted meats

When chef Gavin Mills helmed the kitchen at Wood & Vine two years ago we applauded his intricate charcuterie program, which featured such salty-smoky delights as salmon rillettes and house-stuffed chorizo.

Now the only thing separating us from Mills' decadent spreads is the twist of a lid.

Earlier this year, Mills and his wife, Jessica, launched Mills + Company Meats and Provisions, a line of locally sourced products inspired by the chef's affinity for European-style potted meats.

"For me it was a no-brainer," says Mills, "it was something I loved making and there was nothing quite like it on the market."

Gavin Mills and business partner Jon Nicolini

The "classically French" chicken liver mousse ($12) is his biggest seller so far; it's airy and smooth, subtly seasoned with shallots, thyme and sherry. Paired with Mills' spiced apple relish ($6) atop a crostini, the rich spread transforms into an effortless and charming appetizer.

Mills' selection of charcuterie varies weekly, though you probably won't be disappointed: For the holidays he's canning a turkey paté with bacon and cranberries ($12) and duck paté studded with pistachios and cherries ($15).

Up next? Cured meats. From prosciutto to salumi, Mills is planning to expand into the dry sausage business in the next few months.

Hopefully it'll be in time for our New Year's party.