Chef Chris Mills stands in front of the assembled crowd, looking only slightly nervous. We’re here to taste the final run-through of his Gatherings From the Pacific Rim menu, the multi-course dinner he will be presenting at the James Beard House in New York on November 20th.
The James Beard House is the home base of the James Beard Foundation, which was founded to further the work of the late chef and food writer, and to promote culinary heritage and knowledge. The Foundation works to promote culinary education, emerging chefs and honour the best in the food industry. An invitation to cook at the James Beard House is the equivalent of a culinary Oscar, and dinners are capped at 74 guests to ensure the best service.
Mills is no stranger to the James Beard House; he presented a dinner there back in 2006. His other turns in the spotlight include an appearance on the original Japanese version of Iron Chef, a fifth place spot in the 2006 Bocuse d’Or, and an array of awards including the Canadian Federation of Chefs and Cooks, the International Wine & Food Society’s Apprentice of the Year and the Pierre Dubrulle Rising Star award.