Tuesday, June 19, 2012

ATL’s 38th Annual StarChefs Gala was incredible!


Some lovely ATL foodies showing Ale some love at StarChefs!

5 Season Brewmaster (and homey) 
Crawford Moran gets ranked ATL's top dog!

Man, I had a ball at the 38th Annual StarChefs.com Gala that was hosted at the Goat Farms Art Center last Wednesday, June 13th. It was an awesome event with Atlanta’s burgeoning chefs showcasing their flair for inventive cuisine. The final count was about 400 people as we walked around to taste some wild bites paired with a gang of wine and, thank goodness, brew!!! In fact, my homey, FiveSeasons Westside and North Brewmaster Crawford Moran, saw me and pulled me to side to sample some of the goodies he had on deck for the stellar evening. I was joined by AJC Beer Writer Bob Townsend, Terrapin Brewery Co-Founder and Brewmaster Spike Buckowski, and a few other beer nuts who toasted off his brewing mastery. 
5 Seasons' Brewmaster Crawford (left)
and the Farm Burger Posse.
It turns out that C.M. had been selected as the top brewer in the metro Atlanta/Athens craft brewing scene aka the Artisan Brewer award by StarChefs! This prestigious honor is officially described as an award given to “…the individual brewer in the region who is creating the best, most unique, highest quality beers in the craft-brewing scene.” Trust me, after tasting a number of Crawford’s signature concoctions over the years, it is well deserved! Cheers, C-Diddy!
The HD1 gangster dog!
As for the grub, there were some crazy things on deck (Abattoir’s octopus hot dog anyone?), but HD1 and Flip Burger’s collaboration—the Pastrami Dog with Ox Tongue-Australian Beef Short-Rib Hash and Rusky H Dressing prepared by my main dude Jared Lee Pyles—had me coming back for more like a Pavlov experiment!
Anyway, walking around this remarkable Goat Farm (which looked like the ruins from a WWII bomb site in Europe that was transformed into something useful), I took some cool shots of all the hip folks who joined me in one of the most memorable food events to date. Check out some of my photos as well as the eclectic, yet delectable dishes, burgeoning chefs, beer pairings and award winners! Make it a point to visit these restaurants in the very near future. Evidently, Atlanta’s food scene is off the meter!

Atlanta Gala Tasting Menu
Chefs
The beer was so good, my dude Empire State South's
Ryan Smith forgot to remove the cork!
 
Shane DevereuxThe Lawrence
Potato Gnocchi, Pearl Onion, Chicharrónes, and Fennel Frond Pistou
Ryan SmithEmpire State South
Duck-Pistachio Terrine, Burnt Bourbon Mustard, and Pickles
Adam EvansJCT. Kitchen & Bar 
Wood-fired Virginia Clams, Crispy Pork Belly, and Croutons
David CarsonBacchanalia
Australian Lamb and Onions Three Ways and Natural Jus
Tyler Williams, Abattoir
Octo Dog, Teriyaki, and Pickled Ginger
Robert PhalenOne Eared Stag
Shaved Radishes, Whipped Lardo, and Radish Top Gremolata
Guy WongMiso Izakaya
Crispy Garlic Shrimp with Congee

Pastry Chefs
Terrapin Brewery Brewmaster
Spike B. getting his chill on.
Aaron RussellRestaurant Eugene
Coffee-roasted Beets, Caramelized White Chocolate, Georgia Olive Oil, and Buttermilk Sorbet
Chrysta PoulosWoodfire Grill
Vanilla Noodles, Hazelnut Croquant, Big Bison Ale Ice Cream, and Micro Cilantro

Artisan Chef
Todd ImmelStar Provisions' Meat Department
Juniper-brined Cervena Venison Loin, Cherry Compote, and Pickled Mustard Seeds

Hotel Chef
Anthony GraySouthern Art and Bourbon Bar at the InterContinental Buckhead
Chicken Fried Veal Sweetbreads, Country Ham, Sage Waffles, and Bourbon Cream

Sustainability Chef
Terry KovalFarm Burger
Pickled Beef Tongue, Leek-Sweet Onion Purée, and Pickled Mustard Seeds

This homey won the
'Best Apron' Award!
Concept Chef
Richard BlaisHD1Flip Burger
Australian Beef Pastrami Dog with Ox Tongue and Tripe and Rusky Dressing

Restaurateur
Brian LewisSTG TrattoriaBocado
Swiss Chard Ravioli, Ricotta, Lemon, and Basil

Community Chef
Taria CamerinoSugar-Coated Radical
Creamed Swiss Chard Tart

Mixologist
Miles MacquarrieLeon's Full Service
Blood Water: Death's Door Gin, Lime, Ginger, Orgeat, and Bitter Truth Creole Bitters

He tried to prove his taste buds
were more advanced than mine!
Athens Chef
Peter DaleThe National
Grilled Australian Lamb Chop, Lamb Kefte, Tabbouleh, Feta, and Pecan Muhummara

Athens Sustainability Chef
Whitney OtawkaFarm 255
Pan-seared Salmon, Sugar Snap Peas, Carrots, Fennel, Green Garlic, and Pea Tendrils

Sommelier
Seth Roskind4th&Swift
Beverage Pairing with Chefs' Dishes

Host Chefs
Chad ClevengerAlma Cocina
Braised Goat Huarache, Rajas, Queso Cotija, and Tomatillo de Arbol Sauce
Shayne VaughanEleven at Loews Hotel Atlanta
Petrossian Caviar Blini

Winners:
·         Restaurant of Distinction Award: Restaurant Eugene
·         Art of Presentation Award: Adam Evans, The Optimist
·         Artisan Award: Todd Immel, Star Provisions
·         Rising Star Brewer: Crawford Moran, 5 Seasons
·         Rising Star Barista: Emily Letia, Empire State South
·         Mentor Award: Hugh Acheson, Empire State South
·         People’s Choice Favorite Dish: Anthony Gray, Southern Art and Bourbon Bar

Extra info courtesy of the Reynolds Group PR Firm:
The proud national supporters of the 2012 StarChefs.com Rising Stars Awards included Steelite International, Meat & Livestock Australia, Hobart, Jade Range, Cervena Venison, Vitamix, Fresh Origins, Meiko, Edward Don, and Verterra/Aspenware. Additionally, local sponsors include the Goat Farm Arts Center, Fifth Group Restaurants and Bold American Catering, Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts in Atlanta, Peachtree Tents & Events, Wholesome Wave, The Atlantan and the Loews Atlanta Hotel.

About Rising Stars Revue
The Rising Stars awards recognize up-and-coming chefs, pastry chefs, sommeliers, and mixologists from around the country who represent future leaders of the national culinary scene. Each year, StarChefs.com selects four American cities in which to name its Rising Stars.Candidates are nominated by the StarChefs.com Advisory Board, previous winners, local media and the StarChefs.com website, as well as through StarChefs.com’s editorial research. Winners are then selected by the StarChefs.com editorial team.

About StarChefs.com
Since 1995, StarChefs.com has served as a leading magazine for culinary insiders in the restaurant industry. StarChefs.com’s original culinary content is driven by in-person tastings and interviews around the world. Its mission is to catalyze culinary professionals’ success and give them the tools they need to overcome their specific challenges. In addition to featuring top chefs, pastry chefs, sommeliers, and mixologists, StarChefs.com’s Culinary JobFinder is the leading job board connecting culinary and hospitality professionals to careers in the foodservice industry. StarChefs.com™ features more than 30,000 published pages of original, chef-focused culinary content, and it generates traffic of more than 30 million hits per month. It has also been nominated for “Best Website for Food and Nutrition” by the James Beard Foundation.

About the Goat Farm Arts Center
The Goat Farm Arts Center is an acclaimed visual and performing arts center in Atlanta. Once an underutilized historic site, the property went through a major expansion and was revitalized in 2009. The expansion added 65,000 square feet of work studios now occupied by over 350 creatives and 20,000 square feet dedicated to five new performance and exhibition halls and spaces. The center now hosts classical and contemporary music concerts, traditional and experimental theatrical performances, film screenings, contemporary dance performances and art exhibitions. The Goat Farm received "Best Visual & Performing Arts Center on the Rise" in 2011 from Atlanta Magazine.

About Wholesome Wave
Wholesome Wave Georgia strives to turn the tide in favor of fresh, local and wholesome
food, to benefit the community. Their mission is to increase access to fresh, healthy and locally grown products at producer-only farmers markets in the state of Georgia. The organization doubles the value of state and federal nutrition benefits for low-income shoppers by creating financial incentives with local farmers.

About Fifth Group Restaurants and Bold American Catering
Fifth Group Restaurants has been an Atlanta institution since opening their first restaurant in 1993. A decade later, their portfolio now includes six restaurants and Bold American Catering, a full-service catering and events company, all of which continue to offer Atlantans a myriad of dining options, locations, styles and cuisines. Committed to providing warm service, creative menus, and inviting atmospheres, Fifth Group Restaurants offers both intimate experiences and a creative force behind many of the city’s most talked about events.

Cheers!
Ale

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