Each year, the James Beard Foundation's Celebrity Chef Tour dinner series brings a taste of what happens at the legendary James Beard House in New York to host cities across the country. Each dinner begins with a cocktail reception followed by a one-night-only, multicourse dinner with wine pairings featuring a diverse group of JBF Award-winners and local chefs and ending with a decadent dessert course and a Q&A session with the evening's chefs.
As part of this year's tour, the Four Seasons Resort Orlando at Walt Disney World will host its third annual James Beard Foundation Celebrity Chef Tour on Dec. 9. Executive chef Fabrizio Schenardi and executive pastry chef Rabii Saber will host the dinner at Ravello, joined by four guest James Beard Award-nominated chefs.
Paula DaSilva, chef de cuisine at Burlock Coast at the Ritz-Carlton, Fort Lauderdale, has appeared on the TV show "Hell's Kitchen" and was a Best Chefs in America semifinalist in the 2012 James Beard Awards. Kathleen Blake, chef/owner of the Rusty Spoon in Orlando, was a 2013 and 2015 James Beard Award Nominee in the Best Chef of the South, a 2013 Best Chefs in America-Southern Region and was nominated for both Golden Whisk and Community Service Awards by Women Chefs & Restauranteurs. Dean Max, chef/owner of DJM Restaurants, a collection of seven restaurants in the U.S. and Caribbean, was a semifinalist for the Best Chefs in America in the James Beard Awards for three consecutive years starting in 2009. James Boyce, chef/owner of Cotton Row in Huntsville, Ala., was a 2002 James Beard Award nominee for Best Chefs of the Southwest and is a two-time Mobil Five Star Award recipient.
The Four Seasons Orlando six-course dinner menu consists of:
Course 1, presented by chef Fabrizio Schenardi:
Appetizers: Crudo and oyster station; house-cured lonza and capocollo; Italian and Spanish cheeses; pickled vegetables; passed butternut squash tarts with sage, speck, jalapenos and caciocavallo cheese; ficattole (fried dough) with spinach, artichokes, lamb meatballs and mint garlic oil.
Course 2, presented by chef Dean Max:
Charred octopus with 'nduja a spicy, spreadable pork salumi clam and pepper broth.
Course 3, presented by chef Kathleen Blake:
Chestnut cavatelli with roasted beets, bitter greens and Turtle Creek goat cheese.
Course 4, presented by chef Paula DaSilva:
Roasted open blue cobia, crispy yucca, moqueca-style stew.
Course 5, presented by chef James Boyce:
Cider braised Snake River Farms Wagyu beef short ribs, white truffle pollard grits, black trumpet mushrooms and sauce bordelaise.
Course 6, presented by chef Rabii Saber:
Nougat glace, with chestnut, fruits of the forest and Valrhona Bahibe 46% milk chocolate.
The six-course dinner experience is available for $235 per person, including tax and gratuity. Discounted tickets are available to certain U.S. Bank cardholders. Tickets must be purchased in advance at https://jbf-celeb-chef-tour.squadup.com/orlando.html.