Duff Goldman at the James Beard House

cakeWhat a birthday! Last week we celebrated Jack Daniel’s birthday with Hill Country barbecue, delicious JD cocktails, and one incredible cake. Duff Goldman of Ace of Cakes fame brought the amazing creation all the way from Baltimore and he couldn’t have been more thrilled to be at the Beard House. The cake was truly a work of art. The statue of Jack was made out of 60 pounds of solid chocolate and the barrel was carved out of a moist and flavorful pumpkin and chocolate chip cake. In his remarks to the crowd Duff shared how in an effort to explain the significance of the Beard House to his artistic staff, he compared cooking here to having your artwork hung at the MOMA. We were certainly honored by his comparison. Duff cutting cake After pictures were taken and the handiwork was admired

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On the Menu: Daniel Boulud

Daniel Boulud Tonight's Beard House dinner is hosted by New York chef and restaurateur extraordinaire Daniel Boulud. Chefs from Daniel, Daniel Boulud Brasserie at Wynn Las Vegas, and Café Boulud will be in the kitchen, including the winner of last year's Rising Star award, Gavin Kaysen. Check out the mouthwatering menu below: Hors d’Oeuvre: Tomato Gazpacho Pickled Green Tomatoes with Head Cheese Tomato and Basil Arancini Tomato Tarts with Burrata and Red Onion Marmalade Olive and Tomato Compote–Stuffed Zucchini Flowers Dinner: Rabbit Porchetta with Satur Farms Vegetables, Purple Mustard, Frisée, and Hazelnut Vinaigrette Sweet Corn Agnolotti with Chanterelles, Rillons, and Thai Basil Butter-Poached Dover Sole with Sunchoke Purée, Citrus-Braised Endive, Red Pearl Onions, and Sauce Américaine Scottish Grouse with Foie Gras,

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On the Menu: September 13 to September 19

Kitchen Here’s what happening at the Beard House next week and around the country next week: Monday, September 14, 7:00 P.M. Daniel Boulud Dinner Over the past three decades, iconic chef Daniel Boulud has helped reinvent French cuisine in the United States, inspiring myriad chefs to strive for culinary greatness along the way. Join us when the top toques in Boulud’s empire come together to celebrate their mentor at this extraordinary culinary homage. Tuesday, September 15, 7:00 P.M. Spanish Wine Lovers’ Dinner Innovative NYC chef Josh DeChellis has turned his attention to Spain at the much-raved-about La Fonda del Sol, the reincarnation of the ahead-of-its-time namesake eatery that was once in the same location. For this dinner the talented chef wil

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Wine Wisdom: Daniel Johnnes's Wine Picks

wine The beauteous hills of peaches and corn at the farmers' stands won't be around much longer, so make the most of the last summer produce by introducing some great wine pairings to your market haul. JBF Award winner Daniel Johnnes of the Dinex Group recommends some bottles to go with this end-of-summer menu of James Beard dishes (and you can find all of the recipes on our website!)

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Recipe: Wild Mushroom Crostini

Mushroom Crostini Jamie West of the Ojai Valley Inn & Spa in Ojai, CA, served these mushroom crostini during the reception of last night's Beard House dinner. You can use any variety of wild mushroom—black trumpet, chanterelle, shiitake—or even a combination.

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Eye Candy: Beard House

Plating Cheeses Two crew members plate cheese courses for Beard House diners on August 27, 2009. The chef, John Newman of Newmans at 988 in Cannon Beach, OR, served a selection of artisanal Oregon cheeses like Three Ring Farm's Rivers Edge Chèvre and Rogue Creamery's Rogue River Blue Cheese. Check out more photos from this late-summer dinner. August 27, 2009, The Beard House, NYC (Photo by Tom Kirkman)

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Eat this Word: Speck

SpeckWHAT? Mrs. Sprat's preferred bacon. Writing in The Food of Italy about the Italian Alps region, Waverly Root called speck "the ultimate in pork preparation." Its preparation, incidentally, can't be hurried. The meat is slowly smoked over several months for a few hours a day. "The theory is that if the smoking were done all at the same time," Root writes, "only the outer layer of meat would be really smoked, whereas the slower process smokes it through and through." Cold temperatures and high altitudes also contribute to the process. Speck yields large quantities of fat when rendered. The fat is occasionally poured over bread or used to fry potatoes, and the speck itself is often used as a garnish. WHERE? Wolfgang Ban and Eduard Frauneder's Beard House dinner WHEN?

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