Food and Drink

5 of Charlotte’s best chefs are coming together for one of the year’s hottest dinners

Courtesy of Haymaker Restaurant
Courtesy of Haymaker Restaurant

If you are a foodie in any capacity, then you have likely heard of the James Beard Foundation and the importance of being recognized by it as a chef. It means that you are among the best of the best in the culinary world, and lucky for us, we have several James Beard-nominated chefs right here in our city.

On Sept. 19, Chef William Dissen of Haymaker, along with fellow James Beard nominees and great friends Greg Collier (Uptown Yolk, Leah and Louise), Paul Verica (The Stanley), Joe Kindred (Kindred, Hello Sailor), and Charlotte Jenkins (Haymaker) will come together to host one of the hottest dinner tickets in Charlotte. The event will take place at Haymaker beginning at 6:30 pm.

Courtesy of Haymaker Charlotte

“The concept for this dinner arose out of my connection with the James Beard Foundation,” Chef William Dissen told CharlotteFive. “After hosting a successful seminar for them last summer here in Charlotte, they wanted to do a follow-up seminar, which will take place Sept. 18. I suggested hosting a dinner as well, and they loved the idea. I ran it by some of my closest friends in the industry, and they were on board, too.”

The fact that the James Beard Foundation would like to facilitate a dinner in Charlotte is a big deal for our city. It shows that the foundation is excited to see what our city’s culinary scene has to offer, and it is a stepping stone in shaping our culinary identity.

“Food is one of the most integral parts in shaping a city’s identity. We’re in a place right now to write the book on Charlotte’s story and show that our food scene is here to stay,” Dissen said.

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Photo by Copernicus Photography<br>Chef Greg Collier Jonathan Cooper Photographed by Jonathan Cooper

The theme for the dinner is “Celebrate the Season in the Queen City.” It is a way to honor and celebrate the transition from summer to fall through food. Summer is a time for things like corn, melons and heirloom tomatoes, while the fall brings sweet potatoes, squash and leafy greens. The chefs will play around with a host of flavors for the special five-course food and wine pairing.

This dinner is not just a time for these chefs to showcase their talents—it is also a way for them to give back to the foundation’s Impact Programs.

Courtesy of Chef William Dissen

The James Beard Foundation’s Impact Programs aims to bring awareness and education to issues surrounding food waste, childhood nutrition, diversity and sustainable food sources. It is a way to show that chefs and others in the culinary industry can use their prominence to make change.

“We want to be an important part of the community. We can make an impact by supporting more local farmers and artisans, which helps to create a more sustainable food system,” Dissen said.

If you would like to attend the event, it’s not too late. You can purchase your $150 ticket via this link.