On the Menu: Summer's Bounty

Chefs & Champagne The open sky, a beautiful field, and one big tent. Nothing says summer to us like our annual Chefs & Champagne event in the Hamptons. There’s sunshine, lots of bubbly, and of course, the best food of the season. All the usual suspects are there—heirloom tomatoes, strawberries, and plenty of fresh fish—lovingly dressed up by some of the most acclaimed chefs in the nation. What are we looking forward to? Missy Robbins’ ricotta sformato with zucchini, mint, and lemon; Marc Forgione’s watermelon soup with jumbo lump crab and wild clover honey; Craig Hopson’s duck confit and green mango salad with mizuna and honey vinaigrette; and

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Wine Wisdom: Natalie MacLean

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We asked sommelier, writer, and four-time Beard Award winner Natalie MacLean to tell us her favorite summertime wines that don't cost an arm and a leg. Best Patio Sipper: Ca’ Del Solo Vineyard Muscat 2007 (Monterey, CA): Medium-bodied and slightly off-dry white. About $17. Best Poolside Chiller: Nobilo Regional Collection Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2006 (New Zealand): Pure grassy goodness! About $16. Best Barbecue Quaffer: Peter Lehmann Shiraz Grenache 2005 (Australia): A full-bodied palate-whacker of a wine. About $15.

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Snack: Gastroteca

If you happen to run into chef Jody Williams tonight (she's a part of the live blogging posse) and you feel inclined to talk about her lovely place Gottino, what ever you do, do not call it a wine bar, even if you say it is the bestest most charming wine bar in the universe, you will be rebuffed. It is a gastroteca. Someone please alert Websters.

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Snack: In the press room with Aldo Sohm

Enjoying a glass of champagne after winning outstanding wine service. He said he couldn't hear what was announced and missed hearing his name. Happily Eric Ripert who was sitting next to him did, and elbowed him to go up on stage. Congratulations a tous au Bernardin. I believe this win completes their set of beard awards. photo2

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