Cris Comerford Gathers Chefs to Support the Gulf Coast

Chef Cris Comerford Gathers Chefs from Around the Country to Learn that  
Gulf Seafood is AS GOOD AS IT GETS!

They say you never want too many chefs in a kitchen, but they never mentioned a shrimp boat! On Monday, September 13 an unprecedented event will partner some of the country's top chefs and the Louisiana Seafood Marketing and Promotion Board while White House chef Cris Comerford, joined by Louisiana chefs (John Folse - Folse & Company, John Besh - Besh Restaurant Group, Chris Lusk - Café Adelaide, Drew Dzejak -The Grill Room, Christopher Lynch - Meson 923, Baruch Rabasa - Meson 923) and an elite group of chefs from around the country (Rick Tramonto - Chicago; Victor Albisu - Washington, DC; Robert Wiedmaier - Washington, DC; Jeff Tunks - Washington, DC; Michelle Bernstein - Miami; Michael Schwartz - Miami; Peter Vauthy - Miami; James Siao - Phoenix; Brandon Boudet - Los Angeles; Dan Bugge and Chester Gerl - Seattle) to gather in New Orleans to learn about the extensive work being done by state governments to ensure that Gulf seafood remains safe and delicious.

Sunday, September 12, 2010 - Chefs arrive
6:00 pm - Welcome reception at the host hotel- The Windsor Court Hotel
7:00 pm - Depart on buses from the Windsor Court for the Dine Around
7:15 pm until 11 pm - Chefs visit restaurants- Zea’s, Ralph’s on the Park, and August 

Monday, September 13, 2010
8:00 am - Chefs depart for shrimp and fishing boats
10:30am - Visit shrimp dock and seafood processing facility
1pm - Lunch briefing on Gulf seafood safety with FDA Commissioner, Dr.  Margaret Hamburg.
3:00 pm till 4:00 pm - Louisiana chefs host visiting chefs separately in select kitchens to prepare Gulf seafood dishes for the Block Party.
6:00pm - Block Party and welcome home for Katrina affected family.  Shrimp boil, dishes prepared by Louisiana host chefs and their out of town counter parts and serving Gulf Seafood at block in a St. Bernard Parish neighborhood that is being restored.                      
6:30pm - Ribbon cutting for the family returning home- Glenda Ceaser*.
Glenda Ceaser has been living in a rental home in Alexandria, LA since evacuating during Hurricane Katrina. Her home in St. Bernard Parish, which was also where she ran her state licensed daycare center, was completely submerged in flood water for 14 days. The completion of her home will not only allow her to return to her community, but also enable her to once again run her daycare. Additionally, Glenda has been caring for her five grandchildren following the murder of her daughter in March 2007.

In addition to the briefing, the chefs will head out onto the water to see a reopened area firsthand, and to see gulf seafood at its source. That evening, the chefs will participate in a ‘block party’ with St. Bernard Project, a non-profit organization, celebrating Gulf seafood dishes by cooking for local fishermen and other residents who have returned to St. Bernard Parish, formerly devastated by Katrina which has since been rebuilt by volunteers.

In the wake of the BP/Obama Deepwater Horizon oil spill, state governments along the Gulf Coast took action immediately following the spill to ensure that this vital domestic, sustainable resource be preserved. State fisheries authorities immediately set up protocols to ensure that water and seafood are extensively tested and re-tested to ensure that areas re-opened to fishing are safe. The biggest challenge, at present, is helping this industry get back on its feet, as waters re-open and safe Gulf seafood re-enters the market, to overcome the challenges in perception that it is facing around the country which is why these prominent chefs have come together for the common goal of telling America that the Gulf is open for business.

Participating Chefs:

Cris Comerford - White House Executive Chef - Washington, DC
Tafari Campbell - White House Sous Chef - Washington, DC

Louisiana Chefs:
John Besh - Besh Restaurant Group
Drew Dzejak - The Grill Room
Chip Flanagan - Ralph’s on The Park
John Folse - Folse & Company
Chris Lusk - Café Adelaide
Christopher Lynch - Meson 923
Baruch Rabasa - Meson 923
Greg Reggio - Taste Buds, Inc.

Visting Chefs:

Victor Albisu - Washington, DC – BLT Steak
Michelle Bernstein - Miami - Michy’s, Sra. Martinez
Brandon Boudet - Los Angeles - Dominick’s
Dan Bugge  - Seattle - Matt’s in the Market
Chester Gerl - Seattle - Matt’s in the Market
Michael Schwartz - Miami - Michael’s Genuine Food & Drink
James Siao - Phoenix - TAGGIA
Rick Tramonto - Chicago - Tru, Tramonto Steak and Seafood, Osteria di Tramonto, RT Lounge
Jeff Tunks- Washington, DC - Acadiana, Ceiba, DC Coast, PassionFish, TenPenh
Peter Vauthy - Miami - Red The Steakhouse
Robert Wiedmaier - Washington, DC - Marcel’s, Brasserie Beck, Mussel Bar, BRABO

The Cooking Channel Stars:
Al Roker – My Life in Food
Kelsey Nixon – Kelsey & Spike Cook
Lee Anne Wong – Unique Eats

For More Information:
Simone Rathle- 703.534.8100,
Louisiana Seafood Board--Public Relations Advisory Consultant
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