Eager to learn more about The Hospital Hospitality House of Richmond’s “SAVOR The White House,” on June 26 I found myself sipping Pinot Grigio at a press event in the decadent KDW Home kitchen design showroom. I ventured out to sample the goods of some local collaborators and rub shoulders with former White House Executive Pastry Chef Roland Mesnier, this year’s special guest and culinary director.
SAVOR The White House directly benefits the Hospital Hospitality House of Richmond, which since 1984 has been “a place to call home” for more than 118,000 patients in medical crisis and their families. On October 1, 2011 at the Country Club of Virginia, Chef Mesnier will direct a kitchen of Richmond culinary talent in recreating a traditional state dinner. An honor typically reserved for diplomats, statesmen and royals, the state dinner will expose Richmonders to a dining experience known to only a select few.
Working their magic in the kitchen.
I knew the food at KDW Home would be exquisite – succulent meatball kabobs, shots of carrot puree, and platters of fresh coral sashimi – but I wasn’t expecting a full-on comedic performance from Chef Mesnier, whose geniality ensures the event will be a sold-out success. Among Chef Mesnier’s accolades are 18 gold, 4 silver, and 3 bronze medals as well as the French Legion of Honor. However, stand-up comedy comes as easily to him as baking Bill Clinton’s favorite strawberry shortcake. The Chef brought down the house at KDW Home with belly-achingly hilarious tales from 26 years of White House pranks. His practical jokes were well received by both the former leaders of the free world and the kitchen showroom, proving that the public’s and presidential tastes may not be so different after all.
In short: go for the food, stay for the stories. For more information on the SAVOR The White House, contact the Hospital Hospitality House at (804) 828-6901 (ext. 425) or visit their website.
An RVA newbie, but no stranger to the comforts of Southern cuisine, Diana spent her formative years picking crabs in Baltimore. W&M drew her to Virginia and she’s never looked back. Check her out on Tumblr and Twitter.