This past Saturday afternoon, July 29th I attended the James Beard Foundation’s annual Chefs & Champagne Summer tasting party held at Wölffer Estate Winery in Sagaponack, just east of the town of Bridgehampton on the south fork of Long Island.
The event raises funds for the philanthropic work of the foundation and this years honoree was Chef, author and philanthropist, Marcus Samuelsson.
There were 40+ Chefs serving tastings of their signature dishes to be washed down with wine and cider from Wölffer Estate, beer from Ommegang Brewery and cocktails from Tito’s vodka. This year the free-flowing Champagne was provided by Barons de Rothchild which poured their Brut and Rosé.
The weather looked liked it might be a factor this year with dark clouds looming on the horizon in the morning but the day turned into a gorgeous, comfortable afternoon, unlike the sweltering sauna-like conditions of last year.
Some of the bites I sampled:
Greg Baxtrom Olmstead: Radish Top Gazpacho
Matt Abdoo Pig Beach: Deviled Eggs with Country Ham Salad
Jefferey McInnis/Janine Booth Root & Bone: Shrimp and Grits with Melted Tomato, Charred Corn, Pickled Onions and Bacon-Beer Jus
Domicic Rice Calissa: Montauk Fluke Crudo with Watermelon Finger Limes, Pickled Watermelon Rind, Radishes, Sesame Seeds, Olives and Basil
Galen Zamarra Mas Farmhouse: Trout Piscator
Daniel Skurnick Le CouCou: Le Crêment d’ Anjou with Local Goat Cheese and Summer Berries
Stephen Bogardus The North Fork Table and Inn: Chilled Sweet Corn Mousseline with Fermented Berries
Graeme Cockburn Windstar Cruise: Seared Oak-Smoked Salmon
P.J. Calupa The Spainard: Lobster Filane Toasts with Charred Corn, Crème Fraiche and Tarragon
Britt-Marie Culey Coquette Pattisserie: Smoked Ohio Peaches-Elderflower Crémeux with Champagne Chartogne-Taillet Rosé Aspic
Andy D’Amico Nice Martin: Moroccan Shrimp Burger
Brian Cheewing Wölffer Kitchen: Montauk Tuna Tacos with Avocado Puree and Pineapple Salsa
Oliver Lange Zume: Wagyu Beef Tartare with Saikyo Miso Bun and Australian Winter Truffle
Marcus Samuelsson Red Rooster: Jerk Pork Belly with Stone Fruit, Pickled Cabbage and Cornbread Crisp
Bryan Hunt Fowler & Wells: Hamachi with Celery and Sea Urchin Lemon Posset with Blueberries and Cornmeal Cake