Four leading French restaurants in South Florida are going all out with special prix fixe celebration dinners for take out or dine in along with a Zoom dinner party on October 28. No wonder they’re going all out – it’s in honor of the birthday of Auguste Escoffier described as “the king of chefs and the chef of kings” and the founder of Modern Cuisine. The event is spearheaded by culinary organization Les Dames d’Escoffier‘s South Florida chapter (proud to say I’m a member).

 

 

Participating French restaurants in South Florida include Semilla French Wine Bar & CafĂ© in Miami Beach, M & V CafĂ© in North Miami, BrulĂ© Bistro in Delray Beach, and CafĂ© Boulud in Palm Beach. Diners can choose to take out dinner or enjoy it in the restaurants. At the Miami restaurants, the special five course menu for takeout or dine in features Potiron Soup & Crawfish; Haddock Espuma; Chilled octopus salad with avocado/cilantro vinaigrette; Lamb Chop “Champvallon,” grilled veggies; Truffle Brie cheese; and Red Berries Pavlova. The price is $88 for two plus tax and gratuity (in restaurant). CafĂ© Boulud will feature a 4-course tasting menu for $60 per person plus tax and gratuity. Menu highlights include Turnip vichyssoise; Butternut squash risotto; Faroe islands salmon; and Vanilla crĂšme brĂ»lĂ©e.

 

The Les Dames South Florida chapter will be doing a “French Connection Dinner” Zoom at 7 p.m. bringing together Les Dames and guest diners in a virtual French Dinner party. Special wine and champagne offerings are also on tap. Reservations and takeout orders are required 48 hours in advance with payment in advance and 24 hours for dining in. To reserve, contact each restaurant directly. To participate in the Zoom event, write to Gina Castaldo Natoli at ginacastaldo@gmail.com to get the link.

This community outreach event celebrates smaller, independently owned restaurants as the pandemic continues and these restaurant owners are struggling to stay afloat.

About Les Dames d’Escoffier International (LDEI) 
Les Dames d’Escoffier International (LDEI) is the only organization of its kind: a worldwide society of professional women of high achievement in the fields of food, fine beverage and hospitality. The membership, composed of individual chapters, is highly diversified reflecting the multi-faceted field of contemporary gastronomy. The mission of “Les Dames” is to improve nutrition, education and quality of life in the community. Through various signature fundraising events, LDE South Florida awards scholarship monies to local college-bound female Culinary students.

About Master French Chef Frederic Joulin

Growing up in Paris, Escoffier-trained Joulin started his cooking career at the age of 17, when he started assisting in some of the top kitchens in Paris.
He served as the private chef to French President Jacques Chirac in the Elysees Palace in Paris for two years. Over the years, Joulin went on to work with reputable restaurants such as Le Divellac and Jules Verne, and Paris’ most notable chefs, including three-Michelin star chef Guy Savoy. Deciding he wanted to pursue a more relaxed lifestyle, he moved to Miami, and opend Semilla French Wine Bar and Cafe in 2013.

About Chef Fabrice di Rienzo
Chef Di Rienzo was born and raised in Lyon, the French capital of gastronomy. He worked with Pierre Orsi at Restaurant Orsi Pierre in Lyon. at La ChĂšvre d’Or in Èze in the south of France, L’Ambroisie in Paris; at Daniel in New York with Chef Daniel Boulud; and with Chef Paul Bocuse at L’Auberge du Pont de Collonges at Collonges au Mont d’Or in France, and with 3-Michelin-starred restaurateur Bernard Loiseau at the HĂŽtel-Restaurant Relais Bernard Loiseau in Saulieu, France.  He was owner and chef of his own restaurant, La Table d’Auzeville, “in the style of Escoffier” in Auzeville, Tolosane, France for eight years. He won several awards, including the prestigious Prix Lucien Vanel awards for best restaurant in the Toulouse region, and received personal congratulations from the Mayor of the city of Toulouse with “thanks for having put the gastronomy of the Toulouse metropolis in the spotlight.” He was the winner of the semi-final in Dinard, France in the International Gastronomical Taittinger Contest, and was 4th in the International Finals of the Taittinger Contest in Paris.  Chef di Rienzo opened M&V CafĂ© in North Miami in 2019.

About Chef Suzanne Perrotto
Chef Suzanne Perrotto is second generation chef/owner. Growing up in the family business –an Italian Trattoria in New York– Suzanne discovered her passion for cooking. Sunday dinners with pasta-filled family feasts, homemade breads, sweets and plenty of red wine were the heart and soul of the family affair. Her mother’s epicurean style combined tradition with seasonal ingredients–steeped in generations of authentic Italian cuisine. By the age of 14, Perrotto was in the kitchen cooking and learning classic culinary techniques that are a part of her menus today; she was off and running and has never looked back. After graduating Le Cordon Bleu in Scottsdale, Arizona Perrotto launched her culinary career in many kitchens across the country including the Phoenician Resort, Wrigley Mansion, Country Club of North Carolina, Jupiter Beach Resort and Ibis Country Club. When the entrepreneurial spirit beckoned, Perrotto opened BrulĂ© in downtown Delray Beach in 2008.

About Chef Rick Mace
Rick Mace’s childhood spent on a hundred-acre, family-owned farm in Ohio—where he was surrounded by gardening, hunting, fishing and farming—inspired his culinary interests at an early age. When his family began living and traveling around the world, thanks to his father’s military career, he gained a global perspective and knowledge of many world cuisines, which solidified his aspirations to pursue cooking professionally. At the New England Culinary Institute he earned a degree in culinary arts along with numerous accolades. Once graduated, he accepted various positions in culinary institutions across the US, including the award-winning Butler’s Restaurant at The Inn at Essex in Vermont and San Diego’s Barona Valley Resort. In 2007, Rick joined Chef Daniel Boulud’s restaurant group as Executive Sous Chef at Daniel Boulud Brasserie at The Wynn Resort Las Vegas. During the three years he was there, Rick worked collaboratively with Chef Daniel Boulud and the Corporate Executive Chef to develop db Brasserie’s menu, along with leading the restaurant’s charcuterie program. In 2010, Rick embarked on another adventure in Maryville, Tennessee, where he assumed the position of Executive Chef at the RT Lodge. In 2013 Rick rejoined the Daniel Boulud team as Executive Chef of CafĂ© Boulud Palm Beach at the Brazilian Court Hotel.

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