Eye Candy: Southern Sliders

Rabbit, Foie Gras, and Wild Mushroom Sliders with Pickled Shallots, Whole Grain Creole Mustard, and Potato Gaufrettes At his recent Beard House dinner, Scott Varnedoe prepared updated Southern food with classic details, like these rabbit, foie gras, and wild mushroom sliders with pickled shallots, whole grain Creole mustard, and potato gaufrettes. See more photos from the dinner here.

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Eye Candy: Seasonally Sweet

Black Pepper Shortcake with Summer Fruits and Honey Lavender Ice Cream Peter Hoffman, who launched locavorism at New York's Savoy 20 years ago, served this black pepper shortcake with summer fruits and honey lavender ice cream at his midsummer Beard House dinner. The dessert was made with ingredients that Hoffman and Savoy alums handpicked from the Union Square Greenmarket that day. See more photos here.

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Eat this Word: Sangrita

sangritaWHAT? A bloody chaser. Not to be confused with fruity sangria, this fiery combination of citrus and chili sauce is the traditional chaser for tequila in Mexico, particularly in Oaxaca and Jalisco. Literally "little bloody thing," sangrita is a red concoction made from the juice of freshly squeezed sour oranges, sweet grenadine, spicy puya chile salsa, and salt. According to Lucinda Hutson, author of ¡Tequila! (Ten Speed), the red color should come from the grenadine and chile sauce, not from tomato juice, but alas, most of the sangritas served in the United States and increasingly in Mexico are little more than doctored bloody mary mix. In Authentic Mexican (William Morrow and Company), James Beard Foundation Award-winning chef and Mexican food authority Rick Bayless notes that the better the tequila, the less important the chaser. WHERE? Rene Ortiz,

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Eye Candy: Melon and Mangalica

Philippe Ruiz of the Palme d'Or in Coral Gables served Mangalica ham–wrapped melon, a traditional Provençal snack, at the Beard House's Bastille Day celebration. Click here for more photos. (Want to make a fun twist on this combo at home? Click here for Scott Uehlein's roasted pineapple and prosciutto recipe.)

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On the Menu: August 1 through August 7

Guests mingle in the Beard House. Here’s what’s happening at the Beard House and around the country next week: Monday, August 2, 6:00 P.M. Enlightened Eaters: A Workshop Our series on cooking seasonally continues when Top Chef contestant and natural foods chef Andrea Beaman returns to teach guests how to prepare delicious summer dishes with just-picked ingredients from local markets. Participants will learn how to maximize the health benefits of locally sourced food by cooking meals packed with nutrients as well as flavor. Tuesday, August 3, 7:00 P.M. Modern Asian When former Buddakan NYC chef Michael Schulson opens a new restaurant, Asian food lovers sit up and take notice. Schulson, as per Frank Bruni, “breathes intelligence and creativity” into his

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Eye Candy: Big Gay Ice Cream Truck

Big Gay Ice Cream Truck Bryan Petroff and Doug Quint wave from the window of the Big Gay Ice Cream Truck, which parked in front of the Beard House on the night of the Second Annual Gay Soirée. View more photos of the event here.

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Eye Candy: We All Scream for Teeny Ice Cream

Blueberry ice cream For a sweet amuse, chefs Michael Weisshaupt and John Benjamin topped miniature cones with tiny orbs of New Jersey blueberry ice cream. The bite-sized desserts were shuttled from table to table in a repurposed wooden wine box, inspired by the event's rare-wine theme. Check out more images here.

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Eye Candy: Tattooed Top Chef

Kevin Gillespie of Top Chef The heavily-inked Kevin Gillespie, who repeatedly wowed the judges on the last season of Top Chef, pipes a cream sauce onto fig and country ham canapés in the Beard House kitchen. Check out more photos of the chef's Southern-style meal.

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Eye Candy: Berry Sweet

Chèvre Cheesecake with Blueberry Compote; Buttermilk Panna Cotta with Huckleberries; and Strawberry Parfait Allen Routt of the Painted Lady in Newberg, Oregon, served this berry dessert trio at a recent Beard House dinner; it included chèvre cheesecake with blueberry compote; buttermilk panna cotta with huckleberries; and strawberry parfait. See more photos here.

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Eye Candy: Get Your Beef On

springtime barbecue trio At his mid-spring ode to barbecue, Tim Byres of Dallas's Smoke Restaurant served this Texas beef trio. It included coffee-cured brisket, a smoked paprika hot link, and short ribs, served with Dallas Farmers’ Market creamer peas and hominy casserole. Salivate over more photos here.

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