Nora Pouillon: O.G. Locavore Chef and James Beard Devotee

How did the founder of the country’s very first organic-certified restaurant get her start? And what did James Beard have to do with it? 


Before farm-to-table, root-to-stalk, or nose-to-tail were foodie catchphrases, there was Nora Pouillon. Her acclaimed Washington, D.C. spot, Restaurant Nora, was the country’s first certified organic restaurant, the product of Pouillon’s tireless efforts working with local farmers who brought her whole animals and organic ingredients.


While she eschews some of today’s buzzwords (“Farm to table—what does that mean?” she says, “Even McDonald’s is farm to table”), Pouillon embraces her role as a pioneer in the culinary world. Earlier this month, Pouillon stopped by the Beard House for an installment of our Beard on Books series, where she discussed her her new book, My Organic Life.  She described how she used... Read more >

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Our Favorite Quotes from Beard on Books with Elizabeth Bard, Author of "Picnic in Provence"


Earlier this month, we welcomed journalist and author Elizabeth Bard to the Beard House to discuss her newest work, Picnic in Provence: A Memoir with Recipes, for the most recent installment of our Beard on Books series. Bard traveled to New York from the beautiful village of Céret, deep in the heart of southern France, to share her enchanting real-life fairy tale. Bard’s first book, the New York Times bestseller Lunch in Paris: A Love Story with Recipes, details her journey to love, marriage, and a dream life in Paris. Picnic in Provence picks up with a happily-married and pregnant Bard, whose life turns upside-down once more when a spontaneous trip to Provence takes her to places she never thought possible. Bard shared intimate moments from her life with great detail, captivating the audience with every word.  


Here are some of our favorite moments from her reading:

 ... Read more >

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Our Favorite Quotes from Beard on Books with JBF Award Winner Mindy Segal


Our Beard on Books program invites people to the Beard House to listen to chefs and authors share their insights on the captivating food world. Last Wednesday, we showcased JBF Award winner Mindy Segal, who recently released her first cookbook, Cookie Love. This beautiful tome provides innovative techniques and fun interpretations of classic recipes from a self-professed “cookie nerd.” Segal exposes the reader to unexpected ingredients and creative flavor combinations in her recipes. 


Here are some of our favorite insights from Mindy:


1) "I chose cookies because they are a much better gift than a bundt cake. You get a tin of cookies and you’re really excited about it. There’s a cookie for everybody. If you like crispy cookies, you can have chocolate chip cookies. If you like soft cookies you could have rugelach cookies with fresh jam. Instead of just raspberry jam, you can put smoked almond streusel and... Read more >

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Beard on Books: Dana Cowin

Dana Cowin


Dana Cowin stopped by the Beard House this week to discuss her new book for the latest installment of Beard on Books. The 20-year editor-in-chief of Food & Wine charmed the standing-room-only crowd with excerpts and stories from Mastering My Mistakes in the Kitchen, which combines recipes and tales of cooking mishaps with tips and tricks.


Susan Ungaro, president of the James Beard Foundation, introduced Cowin with high praise of the chefs’ helpful tips included in the book, specifically when it came to Thomas Keller’s secret to roast chicken: “I’ve read his version of his recipe, but I didn’t understand it until I read her version.”


After a slight microphone glitch (“The kitchen here is the place... Read more >

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On the Menu: Week of May 4

Photo by Ken Goodman


Here's what's happening at the Beard House: 


Monday, May 5, 6:00 P.M. 
The 2014 James Beard Foundation Awards
The “Oscars of the food world” is getting louder! Our 2014 Awards theme, Sounds of the City, will celebrate the enduring relationship between music and food. From Nashville to New Orleans and Austin to Seattle, our lavish gala will highlight chefs from America’s favorite musical cities to create a delicious double bill of music and food. With JBF Award winner Ted Allen as the master of ceremonies and JBFAward winner and culinary icon Mario Batali leading the stellar team of chefs, this year’s event is sure to strike a high note.​


Wednesday, May 7, 12:00 noon
Beard... Read more >

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On the Menu: Week of April 6

Photo by Ken Goodman


Here's what's on the Beard House calendar this week:


Monday, April 7, 7:00 P.M. 

The Art of American Omakase

​At Scottsdale’s celebrated Posh restaurant, chef Joshua Hebert creates improvisational tasting menus inspired by the tradition of the Japanese omakase. In a collaborative dialogue with his diners, he riffs off a list of their personal culinary tastes to craft an exquisite, individually tailored, and spontaneous selection of modern American dishes.


Tuesday, April 8, 7:00 P.M. 

Spring Seafood and White Wine Celebration

Boston-area epicureans flock to Zebra’s Bistro and Wine Bar for its house-grown produce and artisanal ingredients from local farmers and fishermen. Join us in tasting chef Brendan Pelley’s stunning spring... Read more >

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On the Menu: Week of March 16

Photo taken by Max Flatow


Here's what's on the Beard House calendar this week:


Tuesday, March 18, 7:00 P.M.
La Fiesta di San Giuseppe

Assuming you can’t make it to Sicily, the next-best place to celebrate the Feast of St. Joseph is the Beard House, where we’ll be gathering the day before the beloved Italian holiday for an incredible, seafood-rich dinner prepared by acclaimed Atlanta-area chef Michael Bologna.


Wednesday, March 19, 12:00 noon 
Beard on Books
In A Passion for Bread: Lessons from a Master Baker, author Lionel Vatinet shares an encyclopedic knowledge of bread, passed down from a long line of French artisan bakers, with detailed instructions and dozens of step-by-step photographs. Join us when Vatinet (whose career trajectory goes from an apprenticeship in France to the... Read more >

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The Bookshelf: The Gramercy Tavern Cookbook

Michael Anthony


Every year brings a fresh crop of dazzling, restaurant-driven cookbooks that renew our resolve to soar toward new technical heights in our home kitchens. But whether we actually reach those summits of thermal circulators and immaculate brunoise… well, that’s another story. This year’s batch included the eponymous title from New York City’s Gramercy Tavern, a restaurant anchored by a kitchen that’s never short on solid technique. But lightning-fast knife skills aside, JBF Award winner Michael Anthony says that The Gramercy Tavern Cookbook can actually make the leap from coffee table to kitchen counter. Intertwining two decades of the iconic restaurant's history with 125 seasonally inspired, contemporary American recipes, Anthony has crafted an invaluable resource for... Read more >

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On the Menu: Week of January 19

Upcoming events at the James Beard Foundation


Here's what's on the Beard House calendar next week:


Wednesday, January 22, 12:00 noon

Beard on Books

Yes, Chef: A Memoir chronicles JBF Award winner Marcus Samuelsson’s incredible journey, from being orphaned in Ethiopia, to his adoption and childhood in Sweden, to his arrival in New York City, where his work at Aquavit earned him a coveted New York Times three-star rating at the tender age of 24. His career trajectory led him to White House dinners, reality show triumphs, and, ultimately, the opening of his acclaimed Red Rooster restaurant in Harlem, where he’s fulfilled his dream of creating a truly diverse, multicultural dining room.


Wednesday, January 22, 7:00 P.M.

Wine Country Enchantment

For more than... Read more >

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On the Menu: Week of December 8

Photo taken by Max Flatow


Here's what the James Beard Foundation is up to next week: 


Sunday, December 8, 6:00 P.M. to 8:30 P.M.

The 12th Annual JBF Greens Holiday Party

Join the James Beard Foundation Greens (foodies under 40) when we celebrate the holidays at our annual holiday party. Don’t miss this chance to explore our muse’s home and sample culinary delights from some of the city’s most exciting chefs. A selection of fine wines from the Seeker, cocktails by Junior Merino, and beers from Stella Artois will be served to keep everyone in good spirits. A goodie bag and heaps of holiday cheer are guaranteed. 


Monday, December 9, 7:00 P.M.

Winter Black Truffles

The intoxicating aroma of black truffles will perfume the air at this extravagant event. Diners will be... Read more >

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JBF Kitchen Cam