Food & Drink

Sharon Thompson: Jean Farris will takes its food, wine to Big Apple

The James Beard Foundation, which honors the country's most talented chefs, wine makers, cookbook authors and teachers, has invited Jean Farris Winery & Bistro to a dinner event Aug. 11.

Bistro executive chef Justin Thompson will prepare a Kentucky dinner, paired with Jean Farris' award- winning wines, at a "Kentucky Wine Estate" event at the James Beard House in New York City.

Thompson will prepare hors d'oeuvres and a five-course dinner.

"We are taking Jean Farris on the road; we are not changing what we do for the James Beard House. We are offering their guests a seat at the Jean Farris table," Thompson said.

In order to showcase the difference in flavors produced from the Central Kentucky region, Thompson will take vegetables grown in the Jean Farris garden to New York City. Owner/vintner Ben O'Daniel said the "unequalled flavors that are in our food and wine start with the soil that is Kentucky." Dishes for the event will range from an heirloom tomato tasting to Kentucky milk-fed veal. Jean Farris also will release a new sparkling wine, Constellations, at the event.

Before Thompson cooks at the Beard House, Jean Farris will host a preview dinner at the winery, 6825 Old Richmond Road, on July 28. The cost is $80. Call (859) 263-9463 or go to

An honor for Sears

Sam Sears, owner of South Van Events, will be inducted into the American Academy of Chefs on July 24 in Dallas. Sears is one of only two chefs in the southeast region to be awarded this honor for 2011. The American Academy of Chefs is the honor society of the American Culinary Federation. South Van catering is at 753 East Seventh Street. Call (859) 233-3736.

Good Foods and vegetables

The chefs at Good Foods Market & Café are selecting a variety of vegetables from the Lexington Farmers Market and cooking them at the pool.

Veggin' Out at the Pool will be 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. July 8 at Southland Aquatic Center, 625 Hill-n-Dale Road. The rain date is July 9.

The Kentucky Proud menu includes burgers, brats, veggie burgers, side dishes and dessert. Tickets are $10 for adults and $5 for children, and they include the meal and pool admission after 5 p.m. Tickets may be bought in advance at Lexington Farmers Market, Good Foods and the Southland pool. The first 50 attendees will receive an herb plant courtesy of Lexington Farmers Market.

In July, Good Foods will celebrate Eat Local Month. Peak harvest season is here, and customers can explore the benefits of eating the region's best locally sourced foods through Eat Local, America, an initiative led by co-op grocers nationwide.

Good Foods defines local food as fresh products, such as meat and produce, raised or grown in Kentucky, and products that are processed and packaged in Kentucky. These foods are identified by Kentucky Proud and Local logos and signs. Go to

Eat Local events at Good Foods include a kick-off celebration from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, with local food samples and music by Casey County farmer Jerome Lange with Art Mize.

Good Foods chef Alex Jenkins will take shoppers on a quick trip through the store to pick the freshest local foods and create a meal featuring the season's best. Her class is 7 to 9 p.m. Wednesday. Cost is $22.

Good Foods is at 455 Southland Drive. Call (859) 278-1813 or go to

Summer cooking classes

Phil Dunn's cooking classes return for summer.

Classes are at Architectural Kitchens & Baths, 345 Lafayette Avenue. Each class is $50 and starts at 6 p.m. Call (859) 533-3553.

Here's the lineup:

■ Thursday: A late-spring supper featuring sautéed white fish on mashed fava beans.

■ Tuesday: cherries.

■ July 7: three gumbos.

■ July 26: one-dish wonders.

■ July 29: date night dinner.

■ Aug. 1: yummy desserts.

■ Aug. 4: Twelve Boy Indian curry dinner.

■ Aug. 8: the art of the vegetable.

■ Aug. 11: classic dishes including herbed balsamic chicken, rosemary salmon and flank steak salad.

On Aug. 6, the class will take an excursion to the farmers market and Sunrise Bakery to shop for ingredients for a summer luncheon. The class will begin at 9 a.m.