2nd Annual Sunday Supper South James Beard Dinner: Jack-o’-lanterns, a Headless Horseman, and 30 of the South’s Best Chefs

by Katherine Sacks with Antoinette Bruno
Antoinette Bruno and Katherine Sacks
November 2011

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Vintage masks set the mood at the 2nd Annual Sunday Supper South James Beard Dinner at Westside Provisions District - Atlanta, GA Glen Leven Curly Mustard Greens, North Georgia Candy Roaster Pumpkin, Tennessee Lemon Preserves, and Grilled Lamb Bacon by Chef Tyler Brown of Capitol Grille at The Hermitage Hotel – Nashville, TN James Beard awards 30 of the South's best chefs at the 2nd Sunday Supper South

Fancy dress, ornate rooms, and multi-course, lavish dinners—the pomp and circumstance of a James Beard dinner can make for a winning combination, or failed fete. It’s the charm and comforts of the South, along with the friendly family-style service, that give Atlanta’s Sunday Supper South the warm atmosphere not always found at big city affairs.

At the Second Annual Sunday Supper South dinner, held on October 23, more than 30 chefs gathered at the industrial-styled Westside Provisions District to bring this charm to a Sleepy Hollow-themed table (replete with vintage masks, candy, and an appearance by a jack-o’-lantern topped headless horseman). Painted pumpkins—adorned with the chefs faces—and candle light set the autumnal mood, but it was really the knock-out food that sealed the deal for this pitch-perfect evening.

The chefs prepared more than 31 family-style courses, including light and fluffy potatoes from Chef Linton Hopkins of Restaurant Eugene, rich Pork Tronchetto by Chefs James and Julie Petrakis of The Ravenous Pig, and addictive Chocolate Lardo Cookies by Chef Jonathan Kallini of Floataway Café. The low-key service style gave a casual vibe that allowed diners to eat as they willed. As The Umstead Hotel and Spa's Chef Scott Crawford put it, “I loved that the dinner was family-style because it allowed the event to showcase more chefs without the food being overwhelming.”