There is no shortage of great food on Hilton Head Island, these days increasingly so in Bluffton. The Low Country is holding its own when it comes to exceptional and progressive cuisine. Those in the know already know that, but the idea of moving that culinary scene into the future is going to take a few more years and cycles. Those in the know already know that as well.
A big step in that direction is coming to Hilton Head Island in February in the form of the island’s first ever James Beard Foundation dinner. It will be held as part of the Hilton Head Island Seafood Festival on February 22, 2018 at the Omni Hilton Head Island Oceanfront Resort.
The James Beard House in New York City hosts almost nightly dinners year round with chefs from all over the country invited to cook for members and their guests. It’s not all about foods you can’t pronounce either. The Beard House has hosted Chicken WIng events, BBQ events and yes of course some major higher-end dining experiences as well. Many times these meals are prepared by James Beard Award Winners. The “Oscars” of the Culinary world in America.
Some years ago, the Foundation decided that rather than find creative ways to get guests to come to New York, they would take those talents on the road and share their concept with America. Thus was born the James Beard Foundation Celebrity Chef Tour. Regular stops every year include most big cities around the country plus smaller boutique markets like Santa Barbara, California, Aspen and more. Now-for the first time- the tour is stopping on Hilton Head Island.
This is a huge ‘get’ not only for the seafood festival but for the island and the region as a whole. I don’t need to convince you that Charleston has gotten its fair share of Beard Foundation dinners, even Savannah has gotten in on the great food with the Savannah Food and Wine Festival. This will be the tour’s first stop in between those two culinary gems which makes it rather unique for those of us that live here. Who are the chefs coming to town?
Maneet Chauhan is culinary star out of Nashville. A Beard Award recipient, she’s Chef/Owner of multiple restaurants in Nashville, Tennessee. She’s been a judge on “Chopped” and been featured by practically every culinary publication in America for her exceptional work.
Chef Martin Rios comes to the island from Santa Fe, New Mexico with a unique blend our Southwestern influences as well as Asian inspiration. Jimmy Banos, Junior is a rising star in Chicago. He represents The Purple Pig, one of that cities most popular eateries, and that is saying something. This will be a great evening of great food.
I cannot state it enough, this is a big deal for the region. As a result, tickets for this great evening aren’t cheap. In fact, they are the most expensive seat of the entire 2018 Hilton Head Seafood Festival, but if past dinners in Savannah we’ve enjoyed are any indication, they are worth every nickel.
For more information on the Hilton Head Seafood Festival coming February 19-25, 2018 and the other great events that are a part of it, click here.
See you on TV