An Evening with Southern Chefs to Benefit Share Our Strength

Last month I felt so fortunate to attend the Share Our Strength’s Benefit Dinner in Nashville at the incredible Hermitage Hotel. Seven top notch southern chefs prepared an array of five courses for “A Tasteful Pursuit” to raise money to end childhood hunger in American by the year 2015. The Chefs involved included Tandy Wilson of City House in Nashville, Hal Holden-Bache of Eastland Cafe in Nashville, John Currence of City Grocery in Oxford, Ashley Christensen of Poole’s Diner in Raleigh, Tyler Brown of Capitol Grille in Nashville and Anne Quatrano of Star Provisions, Bacchanalia and Abbatoir in Atlanta. Above was our Pre-Dessert: House-Made Nasturtium Yogurt with Charentais Melon Gelee, Compressed Edisto Musk and Blackberry Honey by Anne Quatrano. Amazing, huh? Also, see the fabulous menu (below)

All of these chefs had fun creating this unbelievable menu. You can see Hal Holden-Bache, of Eastland Cafe in Nashville, cooking it up in the kitchen (below).

And, this is a great shot of Chef John Currence, of City Grocery, Snack Bar and Big Bad Breakfast in Oxford, Mississippi (below).

Tyler Brown, Chef of Capitol Grille at The Hermitage Hotel, is a Nashville icon and a man with great heart and talent. His work and farming prowess are on display at the Land Trust for Tennessee’s “Garden at Glen Leven” which is where he farms and grows produce used in his restaurant as well as to donate to charities in Nashville that incorporate fresh vegetables in their food programs. The day before the event, all of the chefs visited this garden to choose the produce used in this benefit dinner.

The Hermitage Hotel in Nashville was the ideal venue for this event. Honestly, it is also one of my favorite hotels in Nashville. The rooms, the ambiance, and it’s character are unlike any other southern hotel. Besides its fabulous restaurant, Capitol Grille, there is a fabulous bar which is one of my favorites in the city. This infamous summer cocktail, called “Watermelon Sour” is a mixture of Jack Daniels single barrel and watermelon puree from watermelons grown at Glen Leven was served before the event (below).

 Share Our Strength is such a great cause. More than 17 million children in America struggle with hunger. Share Our Strength’s campaign, “The Time is Now: No Kid Hungry”, is a national effort to end childhood hunger in America by 2015. I must thank Tyler, Janet (below) and everyone from Share Our Strength for making it possible.

July 2011

RADIO

 

PUBLICATIONS

CLASSES | APPEARANCES/OTHER

Atlanta Food & Wine Festival: A Southern Event Like No Other

What a weekend! As you may have seen from my recent post, it was a big one for me. I was in Atlanta attending and speaking at two conferences:  the BlogHer Food Conference 2011 and the first ever Atlanta Food & Wine Festival. Friday night at the Atlanta Food & Wine Festival, I was so excited to have a chance to dine at Miller Union, a wine and food dinner featuring the Lee Brothers. With 6 courses of fabulous food, wine and company, I was in a foodie wonderland. It was such a treat to be able to have dinner with the Editor and Publisher from Oxford American Magazine, an Editor from Southern Living, an Editor of the Nashville Scene, Chef Tyler Brown of Capitol Grill, the Marketing Director from the Hermitage Hotel in Nashville, and Chef Chris Hasting of Hot and Hot Fish Club in Birmingham.

The Atlanta Food & Wine Festival was the most incredible event I have ever attended in the South. Food and wine tents, speakers, chef food demos and more in the heart of Midtown Atlanta. Truly this was the first ever Aspen Food & Wine Festival of the south. See Warren Brown from Cake Love showing his cake making secrets (below).

More food samples, oh my.

I was honored to be speaking at this festival on Sunday with the talented Food Stylist, Tami Hardeman of Running with Tweezers; Bourbon Expert, Tom Fischer of the Bourbonblog.com; and Dennis Byron of the amazing beer blog, Ale Sharpton (see below) on a food blogger insight panel. We had a full crowd, and our talk actually ran over 3o minutes since no one was leaving. I learned new things from this talented group as well as the questions asked. I can’t thank the Atlanta Food & Wine Festival enough for their incredible hard work on this event. You get a standing ovation and many thanks.