Throwback Thursday: Chefs & Champagne 1998

Chefs & Champagne 1998

 

Chefs & Champagne, our annual summer tasting party in the Hamptons, is a longstanding tradition at the James Beard Foundation. It's an opportunity to gather with friends (and celebrities!) in a spectacular setting, sample food from some of the nation's finest chefs, and, of course, indulge in flowing bubbly. In 1998, our Chefs & Champagne event honored Florence Fabricant, celebrated cookbook author and New York Times columnist. The party's roster was stacked with the most talented chefs from across the country, including: Marcus Samuelsson of Aquavit, who would receive the James Beard Award for Rising Star Chef just a year later; Laurent Gras of the Waldorf Astoria's Peacock Alley; and Michael Lomonaco formerly of Windows on the World. This year's Chefs & Champagne will take place on Saturday, July 26, and the guest of honor is the inimitable Bobby Flay. 

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Throwback Thursday: Dining with James Beard in His Own Words

James Beard

 

In a 1955 letter to his friend and frequent correspondent, Helen Evans Brown, James Beard describes a day in the life of a legendary gourmand. He depicts lavish dinner parties, complete with foie gras and Champagne; days spent cooking with friends; an ambitious use of butter; and a simple meal for one. He demonstrates his fondness for food, appreciation of friends, aptitude for entertaining, and his charming wit—all the qualities he was most loved for. Below, his letter, which was printed in our Winter 1997 issue of Beard House magazine: 

 

Dearest Helen, 

 

I had dinner for the Gottliebs, the Sam Aarons, and Jeanne Stahl of Life magazine last night. Bill Veach had brought me a large selection of a wonderful pâté a foie. I had one can of that with drinks, then mushrooms with snails, which everyone adores more than snails in the shell. My lobster àl’Américaine was about the best one I ever made. I used three lobsters for six people.... Read more >

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Throwback Thursday: Interesting Ice Cream at the Beard House

Blue Berry Ice Cream

 

From celery sorbet to Thai basil ice cream, unusual frozen treats are all the rage at upcoming Beard House events. In his Spring 1996 Beard House Magazine article, “I Scream, You Scream, We All Scream for… Crab Ice Cream?”, former JBF associate editor Adam Rapoport, whom we all now know as Bon Appétit's editor-in-chief, reported on a similar phenomena. Check out some of the funky flavors that appeared at Beard House dinners in 1996, then continue reading for a preview of the innovative ice creams at our upcoming events.

 

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Survey the variety of ice creams recently served at the Beard House,... Read more >

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Throwback Thursday: An Ode to Brazil's National Dish

Feijoada

 

As hundreds of thousands of soccer devotees flock to Brazil for the World Cup, the global spotlight has never been brighter on the country’s culture and traditions. However, long before FIFA, former JBF director of publications (and current executive vice president) Mitchell Davis, was charmed by Brazil and its national dish, feijoada. For his contribution to the “Galloping Gourmets: Culinary Postcards from Abroad” feature in the, Summer 1996 issue of Beard House magazine, he offered his culinary insight on the savory stew:

 

“Brazil: A National Treasure” 
By Mitchell Davis

 

Brazil is the fifth largest country in the world, so it’s no wonder each of its states has a distinct cuisine—from the succulent braised dishes of Minas Gerias to the palm-nut-oil-and-coconut-rich foods of Bahia. One dish, however, crosses state lines. On almost every Saturday afternoon in almost every inch of the country’s 3.3 million square miles, Brazilians participate in a... Read more >

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Throwback Thursday: Laura Shapiro's "A Food Lover's Guide to Fat"

Cookies

 

Remember SnackWell's? In the 1990s America's fear of fat was perhaps even more pronounced than the aversion to gluten we have seen in this decade. In her 1995 JBF Journalism award–winning article, "A Food Lover's Guide to Fat," historian Laura Shapiro addressed the anti-fat frenzy:

 

Consider the Oreo: two chocolate discs, a creamy filling, and a tradition going back to 1912. For as long as cookie sales have been tracked, Oreos have been the industry front-runner, occasionally jockeying for first place with Chips Ahoy! or Fig Newtons, but always the sentimental favorite. Until this year. When the cookie-and-cracker bestseller list for 1994 is tabulated, last year’s number six will have flown straight up into first place, with Oreos in a dismal fourth. America’s new passion is SnackWell’s. Introduced by Nabisco only two years ago, SnackWell’s is a line of fat-free and low-fat snacks best known for the Devil’s Food Cookie Cake, a morsel of cake and marshmallow wrapped in a shiny chocolate coat.... Read more >

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Throwback Thursday: Bobby Flay at the Beard House

 

In this week’s Throwback Thursday, we look at the very first JBF Greens event, held way back on February 15, 1996. The dinner, titled Mediterranean Magic, showcased the talents of Stephen Kalt, Matthew Kenney, Mario Batali, and none other than this year’s Chefs & Champagne guest of honor, Bobby Flay. The menu remains surprisingly relevant, featuring dishes like chickpea pancakes and squid-ink pasta. In 1996, chef Flay was the “desperado of cocina espagnole at his hotter-than-hot Bolo.” Today, almost twenty years later, he’s still receiving rave reviews at his newest hit restaurant, Gato. Read on for the full menu for Mediterranean Magic, and see Flay’s acclaimed cooking in action at Chefs & Champagne on July 26!

 

 

Mediterranean Magic

 

Mario Batali... Read more >

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Throwback Thursday: Adam Rapoport Interviews Daniel Boulud

Throwback Thursday: Adam Rapoport Interviews Daniel Boulud

 

In 1995, former JBF associate editor Adam Rapoport (who is now Bon Appétit magazine's editor-in-chief) interviewed Daniel Boulud, who had recently won the James Beard Award for Outstanding Chef. In their candid conversation, Boulud revealed a love of motorcycles and a now dated fitness purchase. Read on for more.

 

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AR: Where did you have your last memorable meal?

 

DB: My last memorable evening – meal, maybe not – was with a thousand people at the Waldorf-Astoria for the Elton John AIDS fundraiser. David Bouley was cooking for a thousand people and I was really impressed by the quality of food. The concert with Elton John and Sting and all these mega movie stars around was great. I don’t have the chance to go out and enjoy an evening in New York too often. But that was the highlight of my year almost.

 

AR: When you do go out, where do you eat?

 ... Read more >

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