Feed Your Dreams Winners Announced at a Damn Good Dinner from Justin Beckett and Crew
Shannon Armour Jars of sourdough starter from Noble Bread
See Also: Chef Justin Beckett Launches Big Money "Feed Your Dreams" Contest
Back in late June, chef and voice of the popular Beckett's Table restaurant, Justin Beckett, put a call out to the community asking for people to pitch their creative, sustainable, food-focused ideas for a chance at $17k in cash and a $10k marketing package from Phoenix based PR firm The Up Agency in the first ever Feed Your Dreams contest.
More than 50 entries were submitted but only six made it to the final round. and last night three of those finalists walked away with cash in their pocket to start making their dreams a reality.
To celebrate, more than 100 people packed the Arizona Science Center's lobby for the first-ever Feed Your Dreams Exhibition Dinner. Guests (Chow Bella was lucky enough to score an invite) were served a five course dinner prepared by the Beckett's Table staff and listened to presentations from the six finalists to help choose who would win the $5000 Innovation Ovation award.
The evening started out with a cocktail reception where guests met the finalists and learned more about their ideas over small skewers of melon dusted with fresno chili, tiny almond waffle cones filled citrus-y salmon mousse, and bite-sized pieces of crunchy toasts points topped with creamy chicken pate and Beckett's housemade tomato-lemon jam.
Shannon Armour Country Pate with Tomato Jam -- we could have eaten the whole tray.
After folks shook hands and made friends, guests found seats to listen to each of the finalist present their cases with speeches and slideshows. In between presenters, the Beckett's Table team brought out food and kept wine glasses full.
Chef Justin Beckett backstage at Feed Your Dreams
The menu theme for the evening was obviously science, with each of the five course descriptions sounding like a science experiment -- but once the dishes were presented, no one seemed to care that they couldn't pronounce half the stuff on the menu.
First out was a plated appetizer of chilled shrimp on top of an avocado, black bean salad with crunchy corn nuts an chili threads. The bright shrimp went nicely with the chilled salad and paired nicely with balanced glass of Domaine du Pouy Uni Blanc '11. During dinner, we were enlightened by presentations from Jason Raducha about his four ingredient bread from his very own microbakery, Noble Bread and learned all about Sub-Irrigated Planter Systems from Cade Strippelhoff