Travel the culinary world at BVI
Chef series brings in talent from New Orleans, Miami and Italy
By Linda A. Odum firstname.lastname@example.org
The eighth annual Bedford Village Inn Chefs Invitational begins this month.
The inn has expanded its line from the Boston area chefs of years past to ones who span the globe.
“We’ve attracted all of the major chefs in Boston,” owner Jack Carnevale said. “I felt this year I would go after chefs that come from around the country and the world to feature cuisine styles outside of the New England region.”
Carnevale got the idea while he read a story on New Orleans’s chefs in an in-flight magazine, so perhaps it comes as no surprise that two of those featured are from that city. The others will come from Philadelphia, Miami, Italy, and yes, Boston. Each one visited the inn’s award-winning kitchens and accommodations before they signed on.
Each evening will begin at 6 p.m. with plated hors d’oeuvres and a cash bar. Dinner will start at 6:30 p.m. with a four-course menu paired with wines.
“This is a collaboration between our own executive chef, Peter Agostinelli, and the visiting chef,” Carnevale said. “It allows our staff to see these masters at work.”
The all-star chef schedule includes:
• Thursday, June 19 — Jason Tucker, executive chef of Tresca in Boston’s North End. Tucker plans a four-course, handmade Tuscan menu for the evening, and he will explain each course as it arrives. He will be joined by the restaurant’s owner, Boston Bruins legend Ray Bourque.
• Thursday, July 31 — Renee Bejeux, executive chef of La Provence in Lacombe, La., which is just across Lake Pontchartrain from New Orleans. He grew up in Lorraine, France, where he spent most of his time in the kitchen. Now he spends his time in this restaurant inspired by the ambience of southern France and surrounded by its own kitchen gardens. He is one of only 44 named French Master Chefs in America from the Maitre Cuisiner de France.
• Thursday, Aug. 14 — Kurtis Jantz, executive chef of Neomi’s in the Trump International Resort, Miami. This world traveler crossed the globe to hone his skills to create irresistible and unique game dishes. His other passion is rock n’ roll and he dreams of the chance to cook for Robert Plant or Jimmy Page.
• Thursday, Sept. 18 — Donald Link, chef-owner of Cochon and Herbsaint restaurants in New Orleans. A native of Louisiana’s bayou country, he was one of the first restaurateurs to return to the city after Hurricane Katrina. Six months later he opened Cochon, a Cajun-Southern -tyle restaurant that is a nice contrast to the more refined Herbsaint. He was recently featured on the Travel Channel show, Anthony Bourdain’s No Reservations.
• Thursday, Oct. 16 — Matthew Levin, executive chef at Lacroix in the Rittenhouse hotel in Philadelphia. A native of Philadelphia, Levin is known for his innovative dishes that combine the flavors of Spain, Portugal, Thailand, Japan and the United States. Many of his menu selections feature his custom spice blends.
• Friday, Nov. 14 — Lorenzo Polegri, chef-owner of Zeppelin in Orvieto, Italy. The chefs invitational becomes international with the return of Polegri and his Umbrian dishes. His restaurant is in a former 16th-century monastery, and his love of food extends outside the kitchen to include plant experiments on the farm and a family-owned vineyard.
Each dinner is priced at $85 plus tax and gratuity. Reservations are required. Call 472-2001 or visit www.bedfordvillageinn.com.
Bedford Village Inn
2 Olde Bedford Way, Bedford, NH, 472-2001, www.bedfordvillageinn.com
Chefs Invitational costs $85 plus tax and gratuity. The dinner begins at 6 p.m..