Lamb Jam is Back in Action in Boston

Photo courtesy of

Photo courtesy of

This April, the American Lamb Board Brings Lamb Jam to Boston for the 6th consecutive year

On Sunday, April 12, twenty of New England’s finest chefs and more than 800 lamb lovers will gather at The Royal Sonesta Hotel to kick off the sixth annual Boston Lamb Jam Global Flavors Tour, the annual multi-city culinary cook-off where attendees decide which chefs have earned their “chops” by voting on inspirational American lamb dishes.

Competing for the titles of “Best in Show,” “People’s Choice” and “Best Mediterranean, Asian, Latin and Middle Eastern inspired dishes,” New England chefs will prepare and serve their most flavorful American lamb dish to be put to the test by lamb-loving attendees and New England’s top food media. The victor will go head-to-head with other winning chefs from Seattle, Austin, San Francisco and Washington D.C. Lamb Jambs in an attempt to claim the title of “Lamb Jam Master” at the Lamb Jam finale in New York City later this year.

“We designed the Lamb Jam Tour as a way to bring communities together and drive awareness about the benefits of American lamb,” says Megan Wortman, executive director of the American Lamb Board. “Approximately one third of consumers have never eaten lamb, and many try lamb for the first time in a restaurant, so it’s exciting to see so many local Boston chefs incorporating innovative lamb dishes to their menus.”

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Restaurants Statewide are on the Menu For Providence Winter Restaurant Weeks January 11-24


People who received restaurant gift cards this holiday season can put them to good use during Providence Winter Restaurant Weeks, January 11-24. Diners will be able to choose from about 80 restaurants offering three-course, prix fixe lunches for $14.95 and three-course prix fixe dinners for $29.95 and $34.95.

“In the decade since it began, Providence Restaurant Weeks has become a local tradition,” said Martha Sheridan, president and CEO of the Providence Warwick Convention & Visitors Bureau (PWCVB), which runs the twice-yearly event. “As the city’s culinary reputation has grown nationally, so has the opportunity to affordably sample some of the best restaurants in the country.”

This year, the PWCVB is partnering with the Girl Scouts of Southeastern New England to promote their annual cookie sale. Some restaurants will be offering cocktail and dessert specials that incorporate popular Girl Scout cookie varieties.

Reservations for each restaurant may be made online at (unless otherwise noted) or by calling the restaurants directly. Restaurants participating in the Girl Scout promotion and their special creations are also noted on the website.

Providence Winter Restaurant Weeks are sponsored by Taco, Navigant Credit Union, Yuengling Beer and the Providence Warwick Convention & Visitors Bureau.

List of participating restaurants and menus can be found by clicking here:

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Cutting the Ribbon at Red Stripe in East Greenwich

Now officially open to the public, we are excited to announce the Grand Opening of Red Stripe in East Greenwich, their 2nd location in Rhode Island. A true American Brasserie, this warm and inviting restaurant offers a modern take on a French café with an assortment of upscale comfort foods for any occasion, appetite or palate. At Red Stripe, you can expect all of your favorite comfort food with a homey, yet elegant twist.  Whether you choose the recently expanded Wayland Square location in Providence, designed by award winning interior designer Judd Brown, or the new Main Street location in the historic downtown area of East Greenwich, there’s no doubt you are in for a treat.

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Chef Nemo Bolin Wins “Best in Show” at Boston Lamb Jam Competition


Bolin will head to California to battle nation’s top lamb-loving chefs this fall

This past weekend, Chef Nemo Bolin of Cook & Brown Public House earned “Best in Show” at the annual Boston Lamb Jam competition, besting 20 other top chefs from the region. Sponsored by the American Lamb Board, the event drew more than 500 hungry fans to the Royal Sonesta Hotel for an American lamb cook-off.

A panel of judges taste-tested more than 20 American lamb dishes across five categories and pronounced the following chefs winners in their categories:

  • Best in Show/Best in Ground: Chef Nemo Bolin, Cook & Brown Public House / RI – Merguez Scotch Egg with Herb Yogurt
  • People’s Choice: Chef Jim Solomon, The Fireplace / MA – Pomegranate Glazed Lamb Shanks with Arugula Pesto and Toasted Walnut Porridge
  • Best in Leg (a tie): Chef Graham Botto, Back Bay Grill / ME –  Grilled Leg of Lamb on Pretzel Bread with Parsley, Fava Beans and Bone Marrow Salad and Chef Brian Reyelt, Citizen Public House & Oyster Bar / MA – Lamb Leg “McNuggets” with Lamb Fat Ranch
  • Best in Shank: Chef Daniel Bojorquez, La Brasa / MA –  Lamb Shank Pozole
  • Best Shoulder: Chef Beau Vestal, New Rivers / RI –  Lamb Merguez Hotdog and Sweet Hawaiian Roll

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Eat Drink RI Festival Expands to Four Days in Providence – Thursday, April 24 through Sunday, April 27

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PROVIDENCE, RI  – Showcasing the best of the ever-expanding Rhode Island culinary scene, the Eat Drink RI Festival is returning to Providence for an expanded four-day all-local food festival. Taking place Thursday, April 24th through Sunday, April 27th, the Festival, now in it’s third year, will be held throughout downtown Providence, which was named among the best small cities for restaurants and dining in the world in Saveur magazine’s 2013 Culinary Travel Awards.

The Eat Drink RI Festival will feature a star-studded line-up of over 80 chefs, farmers, bartenders and producers including: James Beard Foundation Best Chef Northeast semifinalists Benjamin Sukle of birch and Champe Speidel of Persimmon, eight top culinary instructors from Johnson & Wales University, Gold Medal Cheese award-winning Narragansett Creamery, Blackbird Farm, two-time James Beard Foundation Rising Star nominee Chef Derek Wagner of Nick’s on Broadway, Easy Entertaining Inc., Good Food Award winner Daniele Inc., Dave’s Coffee, Walrus and Carpenter Oysters, among many others.

“The food and beverage community is a powerful economic generator in Rhode Island – and an oft-cited reason tourists and meetings choose to visit the Ocean State,” said Martha Sheridan, President and CEO of the Providence Warwick Convention & Visitors Bureau. “The Eat Drink RI Festival presents a wonderful opportunity to celebrate one of the country’s finest culinary scenes.”

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Sneak Preview: Lamb Jam Boston 2014


In case you haven’t already, it’s time to mark your calendars for April 13th and reserve your tickets for Lam Jam Boston. This is one of my favorite culinary competitions around so I’ve been counting down the days ever since last year’s event. There will be 20 chefs from Boston, Providence, Portland and Portsmouth, all vying to win the trophy for the Best Lamb Dish. Plus there will be local beer, wine, demos and other tasty treats. Oh yeah, yours truly will be judging too. Trust me, you won’t want to miss it. 🙂

In the meantime, we were lucky enough to be invited to a Pre-Lamb Jam Dine-Around for a small taste of what to expect at this year’s festivities. The day started at Rialto for a cooking demonstration and 3-course lunch. Next, we watched a masterful butchery demo at Formaggio Annex. Our final stop led us to Tavern Road for an American Lamb Happy Hour prepared by Chef Louis Dibiccari.

Click the link below for a fun photo recap our lamb-packed day. A special “thank ewe” to everyone involved and we can’t wait to officially kick off Lamb Jam at the Royal Sonesta Hotel on April 13th!

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10 RI Chefs Among Honorees as Providence Hosts Rising Star Chef Awards for Coastal New England

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Region’s Chefs to Shine Bright at Tasting Gala on April 15, 2014

PROVIDENCE, RI–™, the award-winning restaurant industry trends magazine, announces its 2014 Coastal New England Rising Stars Awards, honoring up-and-coming chefs and culinary professionals, who represent the vanguard of the contemporary American dining scene. From Portland, Maine and Dover, New Hampshire to Cape Cod and Rhode Island, the team visited more than 150 chefs and artisans across 25 cities and small towns.

“The New England Coast is the place to go to be close to the land, sea, and real food people. Chefs and artisans are opening single-minded restaurants and concepts, and the community has their back,” said Antoinette Bruno, Editor-in-Chief of

The winners will be showcased at the Rising Stars Gala on Tuesday, April 15, at the Providence Biltmore Hotel, beginning with an awards ceremony at 6:30pm and followed by a tasting gala from 7pm to 9:30pm. The walk-around tasting gala will give attendees the opportunity to experience 20 of Coastal New England’s top chefs and restaurants with beverage pairings and cocktails by the winning sommelier and bartenders, in one location for one night only.

“With its vibrant, close-knit professional culinary community, Providence (and greater Rhode island) is a fitting host for this celebration of the region’s next generation of market leaders,” says Will Blunt.

General Admission is $95 per person. VIP tickets are $125 and include a private VIP reception with Champagne and Petrossian Caviar, beginning at 5:45pm. A portion of the evening’s proceeds will go to Rhode Island Community Food Bank, a nonprofit that provides food to people in need and promotes long-term hunger solutions. Tickets can be purchased at

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Inspiring Cuisine at Aspire in Hotel Providence

Aspire 2A-Bar has always been a popular destination for the weekend crowd. A cool, trendy atmosphere with live music pumping everything from Reggae to smooth Jazz depending on the night. A spacious wrap around bar with a large draft beer selection, including some local breweries, a signature cocktail list and a special bar bites menu. It’s a great place to grab a drink or an appetizer to go along. However, there are two sides to this collaborative restaurant and lounge: A-Bar and Aspire Seasonal Kitchen.

Aspire’s dining room will impress anyone who steps foot inside. Fancy crystal chandeliers, red velvet booths and modern architecture dress the interior. Their dinner menu can best be described as contemporary New England cuisine. Chef Jori Rieben was brought in to lead the kitchen about one month ago. He is still getting acclimated and preparing the dishes he inherited, but will be revamping the menu very soon. Born in Switzerland, the new menu is expected to be similar with some Northern European influences. Either way, we were excited to try everything that Aspire had to offer.

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Always Eat Your Vegetables: Lunch at The Grange

Grange 2 - editedUp until I visited The Grange, there was very little I knew about Vegetarian food. It was a type of cuisine that I never thought I would enjoy. No meat? No way! What’s the point?! Although I still consider myself to be a carnivore with an insatiable appetite, one meal at The Grange completed changed my perspective. The biggest misconception is that Vegetarian food is boring. Believe it or not, this was some of the most exciting and flavorful food I have tasted in a long time. It also has a bad rep for being called rabbit food, but that too is far from reality. Take a peek at the beauty above. You probably wouldn’t even know that meat was missing from this sandwich. In fact, you probably wouldn’t miss it either. It’s wholesome and hearty cuisine that highlights vegetables in a way that will make you forget about meat. Using seasonal, organic produce from local farms, Chef Jon Dille has created a menu that appeals to all foodies regardless of their lifestyle and appetite.

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Good Feats: Alton Brown’s Roots and The Edible Inevitable Tour

Photo by: David Allen

Photo by: David Allen

Earlier this month, I had the opportunity to conduct a phone interview with one of my favorite Food Network personalities, Alton Brown. It would be a conversation filled with laughs and tales of his roots, transitioning from filmmaking to enrolling in culinary school. More importantly, we discussed his new show Cutthroat Kitchen and The Edible Inevitable Tour, a one-of-its-kind live event which Alton promises will be something you’ve never experienced before.

Very few tickets are available for this week’s show (2/21) at the Providence Performing Arts Center so my advice is to take a look at what’s left to ensure a seat for Friday’s antics. From what I gathered on the phone with Alton, you won’t be disappointed. Click the jump for my full interview.

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