Dining

Bits & Morsels

Under the tent at the James Beard Foundation's Chefs & Champagne event at the Wolffer Estate, on Saturday, July 26, 2014 in Sagaponack, N.Y.
by Erin Frankel

This past Saturday, July 26th, The James Beard Foundation's annual Chefs & Champagne event returned to the East End for the Hamptons' beloved culinary fete. This year, we toasted James Beard Award–winning chef, restaurateur, cookbook author, and celebrity TV personality Bobby Flay at the foundation's annual summer tasting party at the Wolffer Estate Vineyard.

Flay joined the ranks of such gastronomic talent as Julia Child, Daniel Boulud, Thomas Keller, Wolfgang Puck, and Emeril Lagasse with this honor. Flay received the James Beard Rising Star Chef of the Year Award at the start of his career back in 1993 and was inducted into the Who's Who of Food & Beverage in America in 2007. Susan Ungaro, president of the James Beard Foundation, noted: "Not only has he starred in over a dozen hit national cooking shows, co-hosted the James Beard Awards, and taught President Obama how to grill on the White House lawn, but the native New Yorker also manages to maintain the integrity of each and every one of his projects along the way."
The evening's festivities brought together 1,200 guests, flowing Champagne Taittinger, wines and cider from Wölffer Estate Vineyard, beer from Stella Artois and 40 select chefs, many from JBF Award-Winning restaurants, who sampled their signature summer dishes on the ravenous rabble.

And, who doesn't love eating for a cause? A silent auction consisting of fine dining experiences, wines and spirits, cookware, and culinary travel packages raised over $65,000 to support the James Beard Foundation's mission and educational programs, including culinary student scholarships and the organization's annual food conference on sustainability, public health, and nutrition.
Honoree Chef Bobby Flay and President of the James Beard Foundation Susan Ungaro.
2013 Christian Wolffer Scholarship winner, Jhonel Faelnar, JBF Scholarship winner Christina Cassel, 2014 My China Scholarship winner, Alexis Sicklick, Chef Bobby Flay, and 2014 Christian Wolffer Scholarship winner, Samantha Whitlam.
Carrying on its long tradition of supporting culinary education, the James Beard Foundation was proud to announce Samantha Whitlam as the recipient of the 2014 Christian Wölffer Scholarship.

Established in 2006, the Christian Wölffer Scholarship assists students in their study of food and wine, and with this honor Whitlam will be enrolling in the Intensive Sommelier Course at the International Culinary Center (ICC). Also in attendance were 2014 MY China Scholarship recipient Alexis Sicklick, 2013 Christian Wölffer Scholarship recipient Jhonel Faelnar, and multiple James Beard Foundation Scholarship recipient Christina Cassel.
Susan Ungaro, Chef Bobby Flay, and the 2014 Chef's and Champagne Chefs at the James Beard Foundation's Chefs & Champagne event at the Wolffer Estate.
Early Saturday evening, the clouds made way for the day's last hour of sunshine as thousands of food & drink enthusiasts entered a huge tent on the Wolffer estate for a walk-around food and drink tasting event, sampling unlimited sweet and savory culinary delights from classic summer staples to some surprisingly delicious newbies on the restaurant scene.

Below were some of my favorite culinary bits and morsels of the evening:

Chef Lindsay Autry, presented by VerTerra, prepared a deviled crab with summer vegetable slaw on melba toast topped with hot sauce ...
Chef Tom Fraker and Marco Zapien, presented by Melissa's, prepared a chipotle gazpacho with grilled shrimp ...
Chef Florian Wehrli of Triumphe Restaurant in NYC prepared a Fossil Farms Bison Tartare with Purslane and Black Garlic Mayonnaise ...
Chef Ben Del Coro of Fossil Farms in Boonton, New Jersey, prepared a Fossil Farms Rabit Pate with Woodlands Pork Mountain Ham on Zucchini Fritters ...
Chef Chris Jaeckle of All'Onda in NYC prepared a Tuna Crudo with Kizami Wasabi, Olives, and Basil ...
Chef Philippe Bertineau of Benoit in NYC prepared a Rabbit Porchetta with a Haricot Vert Salad ...
Chef Shane McBride of Balthazar and Schiller's Liquor Bar in NYC prepared a smoked leg of Fossil Farms Lamb Hoagie with Pickled Ramp Raita ...
Chef Brian Loiacono of db bistro moderne in NYC prepared a Lettuce-Cucumber Gazpacho with Poached Langoustines and flavored with Pink Peppercorn and Cilantro ...
Chef Jesse Schenker of The Gander in NYC prepared a Chilled Corn Soup with Heirloom Tomatoes and Rye Crisp ...
Chef Chad Brauze of Rotisserie Georgette in NYC prepared an Apricot-Fossil Farms Quail Ballotine with Paprikash Vinaigrette ...
Chef Todd Mitgang of Crave Fishbar in NYC and South Edison in Montauk prepared a Seared Black Bass with Sun Gold Tomatoes, Wild Arugula Salsa Verde, and Crispy Artichoke Leaves ...
Chef David Santos of Louro in NYC prepared a Charred Portuguese Octopus with Cured Tomatoes, Olive Petals, and Almond Foam ...
Chef Steven Deveraux Greene of Herons in Cary, North Carolina prepared a Watermelon Gazpacho with Peekytoe Crab, Jalapeno, Coriander, and Yuzu ...
Chef Franklin Becker of Cast Iron and Little Beet in NYC prepared Crab topped with Heirloom Tomatoes, Avocado, and Millet ...
Chef Alex Guarnaschelli of Butter in NYC prepared a Homemade Ricotta Crostini topped with Heirloom Tomatoes, Flying Pigs Farm Bacon, and Ancho Chile Salt ...
Chef Jason Hall of The Fourth in NYC prepared a Crispy Suckling Pig Presse with Farofa and Stone Fruit Mostarda ...
JFB Award Winners Chefs Jamie Bissonnette and Ken Oringer of Coppa in Boston and Toro in Boston and NYC prepared Barbecue Oysters with Kabayaki and Seaweed Butter ...
Chef Jean-Paul Lourdes of Restaurant Latour in Hamburg, New Jersey prepared a Beet Salad with Blackberry Vinegar ...
Chef James Carpenter of Page at 63 Main in Sag Harbor, New York prepared a House-Cured Gravlax with Black River Caviar and Aquaponic Greens ...
Chef Jeff Mcinnis and Chef Janine Booth of Root & Bone in NYC prepared a Blue Crab Waldorf Salad in decadently Sliced Green Apple-Wrapped Pecans filled with Grapes, Celery, Lemon, and Blue Crab in a Buttermilk Yogurt dressing ...
Chef Hugh Mangum of Mighty Quinn's BBQ in NYC prepared a Smoked Bone-in Beef Ribs with Chimichurri and Pickled Sweet Corn ...
Chef John Greeley of Crystal Springs Resort in Hamburg, New Jersey prepared a Cherry-Smoked Fossil Farms Duck with Rocket, Sweet Corn, Pine Island Onion-Ash Salt and Barrel-Aged Pepper Sauce ...
Chefs PJ Calapa and Devin Bozkaya of Campagna at the Bedford Post Inn in Bedford, New York prepared a Crudo di Ricciola: Amberjack Crudo with Pickled Cauliflower and Calabrian Chilies ...
Chef Seamus Mullen of El Comado and Tertulia in NYC prepared a Chuleta de Jabali: Grilled Fossil Farms Boar Chops with Charred Corn Puree and Shaved Summer Squash Salad ...
Chef Bryce Shuman of Betony in NYC prepared Gooseberries with Tomato and a Tarragon sauce ...
Chef Yuhi Fujinaga of The Sea Grill prepared Sepia Carbonara with Poached Quail Egg and Jamon Crisps ...
Chef Coby Farrow of BLT Prime in NYC prepared a Crudo with Preserved Lemon Custard ...
Chef Lisa Giffin of Maison Premiere in Brooklyn, New York prepared Oysters topped with Horseradish Ice and Caviar ...
Chef Pecko Zantilaveevan of The Four Seasons Restaurant in NYC prepared a Lemon Verbena-Infused Watermelon, Citrus, and Shrimp Salad topped with Bacon Popcorn ...
Chef Erin Zircher of CRU in Nantucket prepared a Chilled Lobster Cocktail with Cherry Tomato-Lemon Balm ...
Forever Cheese prepared Octopus with Wrinkled Potatoes, aMona Mojo Picon, and Pimenton Air ...
Chef Miroslav Uskokovic of Gramercy Tavern in NYC prepared a Raspberry-Pistachio Linzer and Apricot-Vanilla Shortbread Sandwich ...
Chef George McKirdy of Astor Bake Shop in Queens, New York prepared a Valrhona Caraibe Chocolate-Apricot Parfait with Rice Krispies-Cocoa Nib Crunch ...
Pastry Chef Deborah Racicot of Narcissa in NYC prepared Passion Fruit Mousse with Blueberries and Crispy Meringue ...
Pastry Chef Stephen Collucci of Colicchio & Sons in NYC prepared Tristar Strawberry-Valrhona Bulcey Blond Chocolate Tarts with Marshmallow and Lemon Verbena ...
De Mavens Original Artisanal Dairy-Free Frozen Desserts prepared a Vegan Rum Cake and an assortment of Vegan Ice Cream & Gelato included Del Lago Chocolate, Madagascar Vanilla, Mint Almond Cookie, Espresso, Peach Prosecco, Sea Salt Caramel, & Red Velvet ...