Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Showing 'Em, Foodwise, in New York

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Showing 'Em, Foodwise, in New York

Article excerpt

WHEN it comes to excellence, the James Beard House in Manhattan bears the same relationship to food and chefs as Carnegie Hall does to music and musicians. And one gets to both places exactly the same way - practice! practice! practice!

Seven St. Louis chefs will spend Thursday in the Beard House kitchen, preparing a seven-course gourmet meal for New York food fans.

The Beard House is one of New York's great restaurants, with local and out-of-town chefs preparing meals almost every day as part of the fund-raising activities aimed at making the Beard House a culinary center and museum.

Thursday marks the first time that a group of chefs from different restaurants, but all from the same city, have worked together on a meal, and Chris Desens is pleased and proud to have the opportunity. Desens, the 28-year-old executive chef at Cardwell's in Clayton, is president of the St. Louis Friends of James Beard.

Desens' group includes John Kennealy of the Noonday Club; his wife, Kathy, of Cardwell's-Clayton; Greg Mosberger, formerly of Richard Perry's and now an independent chef and caterer; Robert E. Vickers, the Racquet Club; Brian Menzel, Boone Valley Golf Club, Augusta; and Neika Z. Soisson, Cardwell's-Frontenac. C.E. "Woody" Hiatt of the Racquet Club will go along as service coordinator.

The Missouri produce, beer and wine will travel by truck, and the other chefs will fly on Wednesday. Then they will get together for a final rehearsal.

If you don't think those chefs are serious about practicing, think again. A month ago, for practice and to help defray some of the costs, the chefs cooked, and a large group got together for dinner at Cardwell's, whose owner and chef, Bill Cardwell, has been extremely supportive of the St. Louis Friends.

With a couple of necessary exceptions (chocolate doesn't grow here), all the food and wine came from Missouri.

The chefs began with bison carpaccio, an apple pancake with caviar, a terrine of smoked trout and a thyme-flavored biscuit with country ham. …

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