Last night, Chef Chris Hastings and the Hot and Hot Fish Club team prepared a 12-course walkabout men of Southern specialties done "light" to help us celebrate our 25th anniversary. The 2012 James Beard Award-winning chef and his crew served about 200 guests, who also enjoyed signature cocktails from the Hot and Hot mixologists, wines from International Wine, and Back Forty beer.
Among the menu's highlights:
- Butternut squash soup with fried sage and lemon oil (Dave Snow of Snow's Bend Farm).
- Kieffer pear wrapped in pancetta with J-3 Organics arugula and saba (John Overton of J-3 Organics).
- Beet salad with Belle Chevre goat cheese pea tendrils and citrus reduction (Michael Dean of Terra Preta Farms).
- Grilled quail with fall vegetables and white barbecue sauce (Dave Snow of Snow's Bend Farm).
- Seafood pirlou with Conecuh Sausage (Dominick Ficarino of Alabama Gulf Seafood).
- Pappardelle pasta with wild mushrooms (Chris Bennett of Hollow Spring Farm).
- White Oak Pasture's chicken with grits and muscadines (Frank McEwen of McEwen & Sons and Jason Powell of Petals From the Past).
- Hot and Hot pork and beans (Nick Pihakis of Jim 'N Nick's Bar-B-Q).
- Oyster shooters and tequila baked oysters (Chris Nelson of Bon Secour Fisheries and Alabama Gulf Seafood).
- Heirloom cauliflower gratin with roasted chestnuts and parmesan cream (Bill and Fran Goodrich).
- Saffron ravioli with ricotta and Swiss chard (Trent Boyd of Harvest Farms and Will Doonan of Heron Hollow).
- Gigged flounder with fennel, orange and olive salad (Alabama Gulf Seafood).
- Muscadine sorbet (Jason Powell of Petals From the Past).
- Saffron rice pudding with Sauternes poached persimmons (Frank McEwen of McEwen & Sons and Jason Powell of Petals From the Past).
- Sweet potato fried pies with roasted apple and nutmeg ice cream (Dave Snow of Snow's Bend Farm).
We couldn't have asked for a better—or more delicious—anniversary celebration! A big thank you to Chef Hastings, his crew, and all of the Alabama purveyors who made the menu and the night possible.
See a short video of the event from Back Forty Beer Co. here.