We don’t have to ask if you’ve heard about Fire, Flour & Fork, because we know that you have. It’s huge. Kinfolk Magazine, Todd Kliman (The Washingtonian), Christina Tosi (Momofuku Milk Bar), Travis Grimes (Husk) and the like will be dishing it out alongside the best-of-the-best in Richmond food and drink, and it’s going to be one big culinary fireworks show. We’re always stoked for October, but this takes our fuzzy fall feelings to another level entirely.
You should probably get tickets. Right now.
There are spectacular events happening from October 30th to November 2nd, but here’s our dream list of magical experiences to attend on Saturday, November 1st:
10am: Welp, we’re starting off with a crossroads. No way can we pick between Dave DeWitt’s hot pepper party and Alice Medrich’s dethroning of wheat flour as King of Baking.
The Pope of Peppers| Dave DeWitt| Fiery Foods & Barbecue
Dave DeWitt is one of the foremost authorities in the world on chili peppers and spicy foods. His interest in chili peppers led to his writing numerous articles and books on the subject and he launched Fiery Foods & Barbecue Magazine, now a highly trafficked web site with thousands of recipes. He received the ultimate accolade when The New York Times declared him “The Pope of Peppers.” Sample and book signing.
Flavor Flours| Alice Medrich
Alice Medrich is one of this country’s premier bakers and chocolate dessert chefs. She’s the author of the new cookbook, Flavor Flours, a teacher, James Beard Award-winning author, but we had you at chocolate dessert chef. She’ll demonstrate how teff, buckwheat, rice, oat, corn, chestnut, coconut and sorghum flours can, in her expert hands, add flavor rather than merely serve as lowly substitutes for wheat. Demo and book signing.
11:15am: Another tough one. James Beard history is fascinating, but we’re honestly only picking that one over Chris Fultz’s barbecue (ZZQ!) because we’ve eaten it and already know that it is, unequivocally, the absolute BEST IN RICHMOND. If you haven’t had it, run to him.
Chefs on Fire | Dale Reitzer, Lee Gregory and Justin Carlisle | Kendra Bailey Morris, Moderator | Acacia, The Roosevelt| Ardent
Learn the history of the James Beard House and awards from our moderator, Kendra Bailey Morris, who has been a James Beard Foundation Awards judge, and listen to the career trajectories of these three nominated chefs, two from Richmond and one visiting from Milwaukee. Reitzer grew up in Virginia Beach, working in seafood restaurants. Carlisle grew up on a cattle farm in Wisconsin and Gregory grew up in South Carolina with a love of Low Country cuisine.
Lunch: No way are we missing the Day of the Dead Luncheon at Saison with chef Adam Hall, which benefits CenterStage.
2pm: In a cruel and unusual twist, they’re making us choose between T. Leggett (sheer cocktail brilliance), Travis Milton (a deep well of heirloom culinary wizardry) and Mike Isabella (uh, you might have seen him on a rather popular TV show). After way too much thought, Travis Milton’s great-grandma’s Apple Stack Cake recipe seems like the hardest-won treasure.
Apple Stack Cake | Travis Milton | Comfort
Travis Milton, chef de cuisine at Comfort, left his beloved Appalachia to cook and write, emerging as an authority on Appalachian food ways. Heirloom apples are just one of the treasures of Appalachia and Travis knows which varieties work best for making his trademark vinegars, applesauce, apple butter and of course, his version of his great-grandmother’s Apple Stack Cake. Only a few of the 1,600 known varieties of apples that once grew in the Appalachians and Southeastern U.S. have been conserved. Once you learn the secrets of Apple Stack Cake, you’ll want to plant your own heirloom apple tree. Demo
3:30pm: For variety, we’d switch it up and swing by Williams & Sherrill’s awesome table decor/design talk so that we can impress our friends at Thanksgiving.
Forks at the Ready | Jamie Coffey/Williams & Sherrill From Victorian oddities (ice cream forks, baked potato fork, baby food pusher) to modern sensibilities, we’ll talk silverware, ceramic-ware, flatware and table top design in this session focused on function and form led by Jamie Coffey, Creative Director of Williams & Sherrill. Get some inspired ideas for your upcoming holiday tables.
6pm: And lastly, dinner. DINNERRRRRR.
Heritage, Husk & Hogs: Travis Grimes of Charleston Husk, Clay Trainum of Autumn Olive Farm & Joe Sparatta. 6 p.m., 6:30 p.m., 8 p.m. and 8:30 p.m. Nonprofit Beneficiary: J. Sargeant Reynolds Community College Educational Foundation