Celebrities of the Culinary World: The James Beard Foundation’s Celebrity Chef Tour Comes to Asheville May 17


Celebrities of the Culinary World: The James Beard Foundation’s Celebrity Chef Tour Comes to Asheville May 17

  • Melissa Reardon

    Melissa Reardon is the Editor-In-Chief of WNC magazine. 

Chef William Dissen of The Market Place. Source: marketplace-restaurant.com

If the James Beard Awards can be likened to the Oscars for chefs and elite foodies, then the James Beard Foundation dinners, held regularly at the Beard House in New York City, are like a film’s opening night screening, replete with cocktail toasts and rubbing shoulders with the stars of the show. The dinners are elaborate and feature top chefs from across the nation. However, 20 times a year, these dinners hit the road for a Celebrity Chef Tour, bringing a taste of what happens at the Beard House to cities around the country. And on May 17, you’ll have the chance to indulge during one of these exclusive dinners in Asheville.

The May 17th Celebrity Chef dinner will be hosted by The Market Place’s Chef William Dissen, who has cooked at the Beard House in the past and is involved in the foundation’s Chef Action Network for sustainable food initiatives. Joining him for the Celebrity Chef Tour are chefs Vishwesh Bhatt from Snackbar restaurant in Oxford, Mississippi, David Bancroft from Acre in Auburn, Alabama, Nina Compton from Compère Lapin in New Orleans, and Eric Gabrynowicz of Asheville’s own Tupelo Honey. The dinner kicks off at 6:30 p.m. with a cocktail reception featuring many delectable hors d’oeuvres followed by a five-course meal with wine pairings and dessert. A Q&A session with the chefs caps the night. The menu includes everything from lamb rillette hand pies and coffee-cured hamachi appetizers to wood-roasted rabbit and wild ramp sausage to Spinning Spider Creamery chèvre cake with seasonal strawberry goodness. It’ll be a feast for all your senses and the chance to sample the offerings from top-notch celebrity chefs.

Check out the full details (including a sneak peek of the menu) right here:

James Beard Foundation’s Celebrity Chef Tour

The Market Place

20 Wall St., Asheville

Tickets are $175 (includes tax and gratuity) and can be purchased HERE or by calling The Market Place at (828) 252-4162.


Hors d’oeuvres

nc crab & heirloom cornmeal fritters, last summer’s tomato jam, queso fresco

coffee cured hamachi, lemon emulsion, brioche

dahi puri chaat with sprouted sea island red peas, sweet potatoes and pickled collards

lamb rillette hand pies, yogurt, ramp chow chow

curried peppermash grilled alabama oysters

paired with dopoff & irion cremant d’alsace rose, nv, fr

1st Course

eggy potato salad, shrimp remoulade, pickle brine jam, grated lamb jerky

paired with amity Riesling, 2014, or


2nd Course

spring vegetables, buttermilk and trout roe

paired with 3 brooms sauvignon blanc, 2016, nz

3rd Course

north carolina shrimp, carrot, fresno, black garlic, spring rapini

paired with casalfarneto verdicchio, marche, 2015, it

4th Course 

wood roasted rabbit & wild ramp sausage, foraged morel demi,

roasted carrot, beet crumble

paired with schug estate pinot noir, 2015, ca

5th Course

braised beef cheek, missmati rice grit upma with

mushrooms and peas, spring onion chutney

paired with cune gran reserve rioja, 2010, sp


spinning spider creamery chevre cake, green strawberry preserves,

strawberry ice cream, nasturtium