Q&A with Amanda Cohen of Dirt Candy

 

Amanda Cohen does not run a vegetarian restaurant. Instead, Dirt Candy, her perennially packed New York City hot spot, is a palace for produce, simultaneously a shrine to and science lab for the myriad possibilities of vegetable-based cooking. Cohen is taking her green thumb to the Hamptons for the 25th anniversary of our Chefs & Champagne® fundraiser, so we chatted with her about moving to “Big Candy,” the public’s appetite for vegetables, and what’s she’s bringing to Wölffer Estate Vineyard.

 

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JBF: What is the inspiration behind your dish for Chefs & Champagne?

 

AC: I’m serving one of Dirt Candy’s most iconic dishes: tomato! It’s tomatoes with smoked feta, tomato cake, and tomato leather. A long time ago, I was developing a tomato dessert, but rapidly realized that I could have a lot more fun making... Read more >

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Throwback Thursday: David Burke's Edible Legacy

 

This Throwback Thursday, we’re indulging our nostalgic side with a photo of a young David Burke flaunting a whimsically designed plate of hors d’oeuvre in the Beard House kitchen. Over the years the JBF Award winner and world-renowned chef and restaurateur has made a name for himself through his creativity and culinary innovations with dishes like "pastrami salmon" and "cheesecake lollipops."  That zeal for experimentation forms the base for the David Burke Group, and has inspired members of Burke's team, such as pastry chef Zac Young, who will be participating in our upcoming Chefs & Champagne fête in the Hamptons. Young will be plying guests with monkey bread with peach caramel and whipped crème fraiche. Following in Burke’s footsteps, Young also has a... Read more >

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Throwback Thursday: Martha and Emeril at Chefs & Champagne

Photo by Mark Von Holden

 

With Memorial Day behind us, we’ve got beach weekends and summer Fridays on the brain. Thankfully, Chefs & Champagne, our annual Hamptons tasting party is only a few weeks away! This TBT, we’re looking back at our 2011 fête, where JBF Award winners and food television titans Martha Stewart and Emeril Lagasse broke out the bubbly with JBF president Susan Ungaro. Ready for this year's bash? Check out the chef lineup and other details for this year’s Chefs & Champagne

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Throwback Thursday: Chefs & Champagne®, Then and Now

Photo by Tom Kirkman

 

Recognize this fresh face behind the focaccia? It's none other than James Beard Award winner Mario Batali, prepping for our annual summer shindig Chefs & Champagne® way back in 1996. Back then, the tasting party and auction took place in August at the Ladies Village Improvement Society in East Hampton, NY. While the date and the venue may have changed, one thing about Chefs & Champagne® has remained constant: a knockout lineup of chefs serving up some of the best of America's culinary offerings. See what's in store for our 2015 fête, honoring Daytime Emmy Award–winning chef and cookbook author Carla Hall.

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Eye Candy: Raspberry–Pistachio Linzers

Raspberry–Pistachio Linzer

 

An enduring staple of New York City’s dining landscape, Gramercy Tavern beckons both loyal patrons and global travelers with its masterful contemporary American cuisine, warm atmosphere, and unparalleled hospitality. At our recent Chefs & Champagne®, JBF's annual summer tasting party in the Hamptons, the iconic JBF Award–winning restaurant's pastry chef, Miroslav Uskokovic, served these elegant raspberry–pistachio linzer cookies. Our guests at the outdoor fête paired Uskokovic's delightful treats with flowing Champagne Taittinger... Read more >

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Eye Candy: Oysters with Horseradish Ice and Caviar

Oysters with Horseradish Ice and Caviar

 

New York City epicureans flock to Brooklyn's Maison Premiere for its innovative cocktail program, sumptuous seafood offerings, and sultry, Belle Époque–inspired atmosphere. At our recent Chefs & Champagne®, JBF's annual summer tasting party in the Hamptons, Maison Premiere chef Lisa Giffen served these elegant oysters with horseradish ice and caviar. Our guests at the outdoor fête paired Giffen's refreshing oysters with flowing Champagne Taittinger​ and the wines of Wölffer Estate Vineyard for a perfect summer bite.

 

View this event's menu and details ... Read more >

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Throwback Thursday: Tom Colicchio at Chefs & Champagne '91

Colicchio

 

Here's Tom Colicchio at 1991's Chefs & Champagne, where he prepared grilled squab pastrami with caraway foccacia and corn relish. That year's benefit was held at the Water Mill estate on August 24.

 

Chefs & Champagne now takes place at Wölffer Estate Vineyard, but the rest of the formula endures: talented chefs, elegant food, and endless bubbly. Check out pictures from this year's event on our Facebook page

 

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Eye Candy: Valrhona Caraïbe Chocolate–Apricot Parfait with Rice Krispies–Cocoa Nib Crunch

Valrhona Caraïbe Chocolate–Apricot Parfait with Rice Krispies–Cocoa Nib Crunch

 

Here's another mouthwatering snapshot from last weekend's Chefs & Champagne®, our annual summer tasting party in the Hamptons, where we honored James Beard Award–winning chef, restaurateur, cookbook author, and media personality Bobby Flay. Our much-anticipated fête featured flowing Champagne Taittinger​, the wines of Wölffer Estate Vineyard, and delectable culinary offerings from a select group of over 40 celebrated chefs. Among them was this innovative Valrhona Caraïbe Chocolate–Apricot Parfait with Rice Krispies–Cocoa Nib Crunch crafted by pastry chef George McKirdy of Astor Bake Shop in Queens, NY. These sweet little bites were so popular that many guests went back for seconds (and thirds!) before finishing their rounds through the savory courses. Now that's... Read more >

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Eye Candy: Tristar Strawberry–Blond Chocolate Tarts with Marshmallow and Lemon Verbena

Tristar Strawberry–Valrhona Dulcey Blond Chocolate Tarts with Marshmallow and Lemon Verbena

 

At last weekend's Chefs & Champagne®, our annual summer tasting party in the Hamptons, we honored James Beard Award–winning chef, restaurateur, cookbook author, and media personality Bobby Flay with flowing Champagne Taittinger​, the wines of Wölffer Estate Vineyard, and delectable culinary offerings from a select group of over 40 celebrated chefs. During our much-anticipated fête, pastry chef Stephen Collucci from New York City's renowned Colicchio & Sons served these stunning treats: bite-sized tarts made with tristar strawberries, Valrhona dulcey blond chocolate, marshmallow, and lemon verbena. They were almost too pretty to eat—but, rest assured, not a single one went to waste. 

 

View this event's menu and... Read more >

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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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