This morning chefs from all over the world gathered at St. Monica Church in Dallas to pay their last respects to Dallas’ most significant chef Jean LaFont. Once family and friends were seated, a parade of over 50 chefs dressed in chef whites filed down the aisle. It was a stunning moment. Forgive me for not getting all of their names in here. I hope if you were there, you will leave your name below. I recognized, with the help of Chris Ward: Chef Ewald Scholz, Chef Christian Gerber, Chef Cherif Brahmi, Chef Didier Viriot, Jean Marie Cadot, Chef Louis Vacher, Chef Joe Garza, Chef Laurent Champalle, Chef David Brawley, Chef David Sokol, Chef Chris Ward, Chef Sharon Van Meter, Chef Pete Curley. Other notable names include Phil Vacarro, Anne and François Chandou, and Patrick Esquerre. Hedda Dowd and Jim Deibel both spoke. Deibel told the crowd how he entered the “French-only” kitchen at Oz and applied for a job while all the other chefs snickered. Dowd, a longtime friend of LaFont, gave a moving speech on LaFont’s character. He left home at 13 to become a butcher and worked his way up through every station in traditional brigade system kitchens of France. “He was a “complete chef,” she said. “He was a rôtisseur, a patissier, a saucier, a poissonnier. He could do it all. He was a chef whose presence was known the second he walked into a kitchen.” To paraphrase Dowd, Jean LaFont taught so many chefs how to cook, the ripple effect of his talent will be with us for a long time. LaFont is survived by seven children: Sonia, Stephanie, Jean-Luc, Mireille, Jean-Pierre, Magali, and Marise; four grandchildren, two sisters, and two former wives. And a huge community of food loving friends. The family will be checking this site. Please feel free to leave them a note. (Or correct my spelling!) Short video after jump. Continue reading "Funeral Services Held Today For Chef Jean LaFont"7 Comments »
I posted a piece over on FrontBurner earlier today about the contribution of Frito Pie, and its forbears, to the history of Western civilization.
So, of course, a reader decided to share with me the above photo of her brother’s Frito Pie Pizza. She writes:
I know it’s a Boboli crust and then I assume Frito pie ingredients. I haven’t had it but he says it’s amazing.
My brothers and sisters, we are truly living in an age of decadence.
I am always on the look out for great opportunities to sip and savor the beauty of a glass of wine from around town and around the world. A few great ones are happening over the next few weeks and their press releases have just popped into my inbox just in time to find that perfect bottle to toast your sweetie, and yourself, for Valentine’s.
Fuqua Winery continues to bring us fun and informative tastings. Tonight at 7pm they are holding their second (because the first one was so much fun) blind tasting of Sauvignon Blanc wines from New Zealand to South Africa, and everything in between.
If you are more of a big, bold red wine fan join them on Thursday, Feb 2, for their Texas Tempranillo release party, Vat #15. Tempranillo is perhaps best known as the grape of Rioja, and often referred to as Spain’s “nobel grape,” but it also does very well in our Texas soils, being able to withstand our long, hot summer weather. This new release is 100% Texas grown grapes from the Texas Hill Country AVA. Call for reservations for either – 214-769-1147. Continue reading "Upcoming Opportunities to Taste"
Jump for more beautiful photos by Desiree Espada.
Tito Beveridge (that’s his real name) is an unlikely character to be competing with the likes of Smirnoff, Belvedere, and Absolut when it comes to makig vodka. He’s a former petroleum industry geologist who went to UT. He worked in the US and South America before he switchied to mortgage banking. All the while, he nursed an interest in making spirits. If you knew him when, you probably were a recipient of a gift which contained his latest homemade vodka. When the mortgage market hit a downturn in the early 90s, he decided to turn his hobby into his occupation.
I’d say he made a monumental move. Jump for his story.6 Comments »