You know it's summer in the Valley when celebu-chef and flat leaf parsley fan Beau MacMillan brings some of the stars of the culinary world out to the Paradise Valley resort Sanctuary at Camelback Mountain for his popular Lunch & Learn series.
Beginning Saturday, July 14, food fans can hook up with an all-star lineup of culinary pros for a Friday evening or Saturday afternoon of cooking and conversation.
And with this year's guest chefs including 2012 James Beard Foundation Award Finalist and chef-owner of Binkley's and Cafe Bink, Kevin Binkley, ShinBay chef Shinji Kurita, whose contemporary Japanese eatery was nominated for Best New Restaurant in 2012 by The James Beard Foundation, and chef Kelly Fletcher, from the award-winning House of Tricks restaurant in Tempe, tickets should sell out fast.
Read on for the full Lunch & Learn schedule and the details.
Lunch & Learn Schedule:
July 13-14: Chuck Hughes Chuck Hughes, who competed against Chef MacMillan on Food Network's The Next Iron Chef and is the youngest Canadian chef to win Iron Chef America. Hughes currently is host of the Cooking Channel's Chuck's Day Off and the owner and chef at Montreal hot spots Garde Manger and Bremner.
July 20-21: Mel Mecinas Mel Mecinas, 14-year executive chef at the Four Seasons Resort Scottsdale, who was once commissioned to cook for Julia Child's 90th birthday celebration. Mecinas values elegant presentation and using only the highest quality and freshest ingredients.
July 27: Kelly Fletcher Kelly Fletcher, executive chef at the award-winning House of Tricks restaurant in Tempe. Fletcher infuses traditional flavors of Spain, Asia, France, Mexico and the Southwest to create culinary intrigue through imagination and passion.
July 28: Lee Hillson Lee Hillson, executive chef of T. Cook's at Royal Palms Resort & Spa, who competed on Food Network's Iron Chef America and has created meals for President George W. Bush, Barbra Streisand, Princess Diana and Billy Joel. Hillson will be joined by Charles Kassels, Executive Chef of Paradise Valley's El Chorro Lodge, who has cooked for high-profile events including The Winston Cup NASCAR Race in Phoenix. Hillson and Kassels will be joined by Chef Beau MacMillan for this special event.
August 3: Jeremy Pacheco Jeremy Pacheco, executive chef at Lon's at The Hermosa Inn in Scottsdale, where he also oversees the restaurant's half-acre seasonal garden which serves as a natural training ground for his culinary staff. Pacheco will be joined by award-winning chef on the Boston scene Gerald Tice.
August 4: Gerald Tice Tice, executive chef of Parker's Restaurant in Boston's Omni Parker House Hotel, who has served the likes of President George H.W. Bush, former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger and Prince Albert of Monaco.
August 11: Bruce Seidel Bruce Seidel, CEO of HUNGRY, a new food channel on YouTube.com. Seidel will be joined by Sandy Pollock and Crystal Cook, also known as the Casserole Queens. Best friends whose delicious cooking goes far beyond casseroles, there's nothing retro about these women except for their stylish vintage outfits! Sandy and Crystal's recipes are modern classics with a twist, perfect for Sunday Suppers and easy entertaining.
August 17: Gregory Wiener Gregory Wiener, executive chef of Top of the Rock, the signature restaurant at The Buttes, a Marriott Resort in Tempe. Wiener brings 19 years of experience, a unique style of European, Mediterranean, and regional American cuisine, and awe-inspiring passion to his guests.
August 18: Kevin Binkley Kevin Binkley, recent nominee for the James Beard Foundation's "Best Chef: Southwest" award and Chef and owner of Arizona's award-winning Binkley's Restaurant in Cave Creek and Café Bink in Carefree.
August 24: Shinji Kurita Shinji Kurita, Executive Chef of ShinBay, a contemporary Japanese eatery. ShinBay was nominated for "Best New Restaurant" in 2012 by The James Beard Foundation. Kurita will be joined by Chicago's famed Chef Danny Grant.
August 25: Danny Grant Danny Grant, Executive Chef of RIA restaurant at The Waldorf Astoria Chicago and named one of Food & Wine's 2012 "Best New Chefs."
Lunch & Learn Details:
Friday dinner engagements are an opportunity for 12 participants to dine with MacMillan and a local or visiting chef in XII, Sanctuary's ultra-exclusive dining room. Starting at 6 p.m., the meal is enjoyed at a custom granite communal table with access into elements' state-of-the-art kitchen. Tickets are $195 per person for the multi-course feast with wine pairings, excluding tax and gratuity.
Saturday lunches are held in The Views Ballroom, featuring a three-course interactive demonstration and take-home recipes. Lunch starts at 12 p.m. and is $75 per person, including tax or gratuity.
For additional details or to make a reservation, go here.