The James Beard Foundation’s Cross-Country Tour Lands in Charleston


James Beard Award-winning chef Mike Lata will present the third course at the foundation’s Taste Charleston.

The James Beard Foundation’s third annual Taste America has kicked off a 10-city tour across the US. For six weeks between September 18 to November 7, food-lovers of BostonCharlestonChicagoLos AngelesMiamiMinneapolisNew Orleans, Phoenix, San Francisco, and Seattle will have the opportunity to mingle with celebrity chef at exclusive tastings, dinners, and culinary demonstrations. The third event in the series will be held in Charleston on Friday, September 25 at The Cedar Room at The Cigar Factory.

Sure to be a night for all to remember, the event will begin at 6:30 p.m. with a tasting reception featuring an exciting lineup of Charleston’s finest chefs. Jeremiah Bacon will present a foie gras parfait with plum chutney and lonzino; Craig Deihl is making Carpetbaggers: bresaola, smoked Lady's Island oyster, horseradish cream, and arugula on salt and pepper crackers; Kevin Johnson will serve Pickled fish with autumn squash guacamole and spiced pumpkin seeds in a corn tortilla; Josh Keeler will present a baked potato with sheep’s milk yogurt and cured egg yolk; and Jason Stanhope will serve delicata tarts.

The tasting will then be followed by a four-course dinner at 7:30 p.m. created by James Beard Award-winning chefs Art Smith and Mike Lata, along with two-time James Beard Award-nominated pastry chef Lauren Mitterer. Smith will present courses one and three, Lata will make the second, and Mitterer will serve the fourth — a goat cheese tart with muscadine jelly and salted pistachios.

The next day, Saturday, September 26, chef Smith will hold a demonstration at 10:00 a.m. at the Le Creuset Headquarters in Charelston. There, he will show attendees how to create two dishes — one of which will be a mockingbird cake with ice milk.


A portion of the proceeds will be donated to the Taste America Scholarship Fund, which awards scholarships to students in each Taste America host state.