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Published: Saturday, 7/18/2009

Ann Arbor restaurateur to compete on Top Chef

Eve Aronoff Eve Aronoff
JUSTIN STEPHENS Enlarge

When the sixth season of Top Chef: Las Vegas, Bravo s Emmy and James Beard Award-winning series returns at 9 p.m. Aug. 26, Ann Arbor chef Eve Aronoff will be among the 17 new chef-contestants.

The chef, who is the owner of the restaurant eve in Kerrytown Square, will compete for a shot at culinary stardom and a chance to earn the prestigious title of Top Chef. Each episode holds two challenges for the chefs. The first is a test of basic abilities and the second is a more involved challenge which tests versatility and inventiveness.

Ms. Aronoff, 40, was trained at Le Cordon Bleu in Paris. Her style of cooking is based on French philosophy with influences of North African, West African, Cuban, and Vietnamese. She loves bold, complex, exotic flavors paired with cool, clean contrasts. She is the author of eve: Contemporary Cuisine, Methode Traditionelle (Huron River Press, $35).

Ohio wineries

There are more than 120 wineries in Ohio attracting between 20,000 to 30,000 visitors every weekend from spring through the winter holiday season.

More and more wine events are being planned statewide, but according to the Ohio Wine Producers Association, the Vintage Ohio Wine Festival is the premier wine and food event. The 15th annual event will be held from 1 to 10 p.m. Aug. 7 and 8 at Lake Metroparks Farmpark, Lake County, 8800 Chardon Rd. in Kirtland, Ohio. There will be 25 award-winning wineries, three stages of regional entertainment, and more than 150 vintages for sampling, plus food from area restaurants. Loretta Paganini s School of Cooking will give demonstrations. Tickets begin at $22 in advance for adult tasters. For information and to order tickets, visit OhioWines.org.

Heritage festival

The sixth annual Toast of Ohio wine heritage festival will be held from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Aug. 15 at the Sandusky Bay Pavilion, 605 Water St. at Meigs Street in Sandusky. The festival is sponsored by the Lake Erie Shores & Islands Welcome Center.

There will be 15 Ohio wineries plus food samples from local restaurants, including hot appetizers, entrees, and desserts. An admission fee of $1 benefits the Maritime Museum of Sandusky and the Merry-Go-Round Museum, co-sponsors of the festival, which will offer tours and activities.

There will be tickets for wine tastings and food purchases. Food will be $1 to $5. The $20 package includes 10 food tickets, 10 wine tastings, and a souvenir wine glass.

Organic wines

Bravo! Cucina Italiana has announced its summer specially priced menu features, which include sustainable and organic wines. The flight of eco-friendly white and red wines from Italy and California range from sweet and fruity to crisp with clean aromas. Guests may choose three 2.5 ounce pours for $8.99. The local store is at Westfield Franklin Park mall.

Oyster Cook-Off

Enter your best original oyster recipe in the 30th annual National Oyster Cook-Off. Nine contestants will be selected to compete Oct. 17 in Leonardtown, Md.

Cash prizes of $300, $200, and $150 will be awarded the top three finalists in each of the categories: hors d oeuvres, soups and stews, and main dish. The grand prize winner will be selected from the first-place winners of each category and will receive an additional $1,000 and silver tray. There also will be awards for best presentation of a dish and people s choice.

The cook-off is held in conjunction with the St. Mary s County Oyster Festival and the National Oyster Shucking Contest. To enter and for contest rules, visit marylandseafood.org or call 410-841-5820. Deadline for entries is Aug. 3.

Kathie Smith is The Blade s food editor.

Contact her at: food@theblade.com or 419-724-6155.



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