For the fourth time, Doug Ruley, executive chef for SoDel Concepts, has been asked to cook at the James Beard House in New York, which puts him in a tie for the most times a chef has cooked at the former home of cookbook author and TV personality James Beard. The dinner, a salute to Delmarva, is scheduled for 7 p.m., Friday, Sept. 15, in the Greenwich Village townhouse.
"It is an honor to be invited to cook at the James Beard House - which is one of the most famous landmarks in the culinary world - but to receive four invitations is a true recognition of Doug's talent," said Scott Kammerer, president of SoDel Concepts. "Doug is incredibly organized and works hard."
Organized by the James Beard Foundation, the regularly scheduled dinners feature four- to five-course meals with wine pairings prepared by guest chefs from around the world. Ruley first cooked in the icon's former home April 29, 2014, the year that SoDel Concepts founder, the late Matt Haley, received the James Beard Foundation Humanitarian of the Year Award.
"The more times you do something, the more comfortable you become," Ruley said. "The kitchen in the James Beard House is tiny, and the diners are cosmopolitan people who have access to some of the world's finest restaurants. But now we know what to expect and how to create a memorable meal for these discerning guests. Once again, it also gives the SoDel chefs a chance to have fun in New York."
For the September event, Ruley has created the Coastal Summer Kitchen which includes a reception, a soup course, three entrées and dessert. Many of the ingredients are from Delmarva-area providers such as Bennett Orchards, RAPA Scrapple, Dogfish Head and Magee Farms.
This year, the chef team includes Ronnie Burkle, director of operations; Jen Bradour of Plate Catering, SoDel Concepts’ catering arm; Carlos Rubio of Catch 54 in Fenwick Island; Maurice Catlett of Matt's Fish Camp in Lewes; Alex Martinez of NorthEast Seafood Kitchen in Ocean View; and Tom Deptula of The Clubhouse at Baywood. Mike Zygmonski, SoDel Concepts wine director, will be on hand to facilitate the wine service.
"Doug leads by example, and like anything he does for SoDel Concepts, he makes it a team effort," said Kammerer, who has no doubt that Ruley and his crew will once again win kudos for their meal. "Not only is he talented, but he can spot talent. I'm incredibly proud and grateful for the team of chefs he's cultivated for our restaurants."
Sodel Concepts James Beard House Coastal Summer Kitchen
Deviled Eggs from The Farm
Crispy Rapa Scrapple, Green Apple, Pickled Mustard Seeds, Toasted Fennel Seed
Martin's Potato Toast
Lobster Knuckle, Caviar, Whipped Scallion Butter
Indian River Refresher
(Dogfish Head Gin, Ginger Ale, Lemon, Mint)
Frank Family Brut Rosé Carneros 2012
Compressed Fifer Orchards Summer Melon
Togarashi Granola, Micro Greens
Chilled Lewes Dairy Buttermilk Soup
Smoked Virginia Oysters, Baywater Greens Herbs, Cucumber, Matt's Curry Spice
Tablas Creek Patelin Grenache Blanc, Paso Robles 2015
Seared Day Boat Scallops (Ocean City, Md.)
Chesterfield Heirlooms Tomato Water, Summer Squash Agnolotti, Basil, Flowers
J.M. Boillot Montagny 1er Cru Burgundy, France 2015
Milk-Fried Soft Shell Crab (Melfa, Va.)
Magee Farms Sweet Corn, Butter, Spicy Chow Chow, Pork Fat Dijonaise, Old Bay
Calera Central Coast Pinot Noir, Calif. 2014
Rockfish au Poivre (Maryland)
Cauliflower, Charred Wild Carrots, Onion Rings
Neyers Sage Canyon Red Blend, Calif. 2015
Warm Bennett Orchards Peach Upside Down Cake
Frozen Peach & Thyme Yogurt, Cracked Pepper Honey, Maple Peach Caramel
Revelation Brewery Peach Berliner, Rehoboth Beach