To John Zucker:

My wife and I were in Charleston for the first time ever last week, so naturally we stopped at a tourist center and asked for a lunch place recommendation. We were given two: Cru Café and another place whose name I don’t remember (Jardin’s, I think), but it doesn’t matter. Because without a shadow of a doubt, we chose the right place: yours.

The service was great, but the food was like, WOW!! I’ve never had a better soup and sandwich. Ever, anywhere. It was your capicola, salami, prosciutto, mozzarella sandwich and truffle mushroom soup.

I’ve never tasted a more delicious soup in my life. I’m hooked.

As soon as we rejoined the rest of our family, I raved about Cru Café and insisted – no, demanded – they all be sure to try your place when they’re in Charleston.

As soon as we returned home here in Michigan, I looked up truffle mushroom soup recipes. I found one, but I have serious doubts about it. This is it:

1cup cooking onion sliced
1 leek (white only) split, washed & sliced
2 cloves garlic crushed
1 lb. portobello, stems removed and caps sliced
2 fresh bay leaves
6 sprigs fresh thyme
6 sprigs fresh parsley {tie herbs together to remove easily after cooking.}
2 litres mushroom stock, chicken stock or water
1cup Madeira
6 tbsp. truffle paste (or 60 gr. fresh truffle minced)
1/3 lb. butter diced
4 oz. truffle oil (good quality)
Yields approx.2 Litres


In a stock pot, on low heat sweat the onion, garlic and leek until tender (if using fresh truffle, slice and add in this step).
Add the mushrooms and cook to wilt and release juices.
Reduce juice and deglaze with Madeira. Add the herbs.
Reduce Madeira and add mushroom stock or water (just enough to cover contents of pot). Cook for 15 minutes and add truffle (paste).
Take the pot off the heat. Remove the herbs and allow soup to cool slightly.
Purée the soup while still warm and add cold diced butter a piece at a time following with a slow drizzle of truffle oil to emulsify.
Pass through a fine mesh strainer. Adjust seasoning and consistency with mushroom broth if needed.

Read more at Suite101: Truffle Soup Recipe: From Chef Jason Bangerter’s personal arsenal of tasty recipes! |

Mr. Zucker, I know I’m about to ask an enormous favor here, but could tell me if this recipe is even close to yours? If not, could you please, please give me suggestions on how to adjust it to make it similar to yours? I be so terribly disappointed if I bought all these specialty items and produce a soup that’s not even remotely similar to yours.

Thank you so much.

A forever-fan of Cru Café,

John Krueger

1 reply
  1. RIta
    RIta says:

    I so agree John. Cru is amazing and when we were there we had the same lunch, shrimp blt and truffle mushroom soup. It’s hard when you love good food, and cook and live so far away from where you’ve enjoyed it. I, like you would like to just be given a few guidelines to try to make it at home. It was the best soup I’ve ever eaten.


Leave a Reply

Want to join the discussion?
Feel free to contribute!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *