There’s always a party in New Orleans, but today, more than 50 of the country’s best chefs will gather for a very specific purpose — to celebrate boudin sausage. Expect sweet smells to come from the second annual Boudin & Beer festival, an event at The Foundry in the Warehouse District to benefit the Emeril Lagasse Foundation. Each of the chefs, including big names like Emeril Lagasse, Mario Batali and Donald Link (the event’s co-chairs), will prepare all sorts of dishes that incorporate the beloved Cajun sausage that’s traditionally stuffed with ground meat — usually pork — and rice.
Other chefs who plan to plate some boudin dishes include Kristin Butterworth of Forbes Travel Guide Four-Star The Grill Room in New Orleans; Susan Spicer of Four-Star Bayona, also in New Orleans; Craig Deihl of Cypress in Charleston, S.C.; and Carey Bringle, AKA Peg Leg Porker, out of Nashville.
Aside from the sausage-filled fare, the fest also will have country-blues music from Drake White, hand-rolled cigars from Michael Herklots of premium tobacconist Nat Sherman, beer from Abita, spirits from Buffalo Trace Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey and wines from California’s Au Bon Climat.
The party continues into Saturday as the Emeril Lagasse Foundation hosts Carnivale du Vin, one of the top charity wine auctions in the country, with dinner, dancing and live entertainment. Bring your wallet if you expect to get in on the auction action. Bid on items like a rare Cristal Rosé Jeroboam champagne by Louis Roederer, a luxury chartered yacht trip in the British Virgin Islands and two nights in Cabo San Lucas with Lagasse and Sammy Hagar (it’s not as random as you think; the former Van Halen rocker founded Cabo Wabo Tequila). The annual fund-raiser has collected more than $14 million since it was established seven years ago.
Photo Courtesy of Cheryl Gerber