A Fall Fusion of Flavor!

CulinaryArts@SPAC Returns with 5-Course Plant-Based Dinner on Nov 20

Jehangir Mehta

SARATOGA SPRINGS – Saratoga Performing Arts Center announces “Fall Flavor Fusion: A Five-Course Plant-Based Dinner” created by NYC-based chef and founder of Graffiti Earth Jehangir Mehta alongside Head Chef of Yaddo Michael Blake and curator Chef Kim Klopstock of The Lily and the Rose. Presented as part of “CulinaryArts@SPAC,” the festive autumn feast will feature plant-based courses juxtaposing temperatures, textures and tastes with flavors from all around the globe. The special event will be held in SPAC’s beautiful Nancy DiCresce Room in the new Pines@SPAC facility on Saturday, November 20 at 6 p.m.    

“We knew that we had to bring Chef Mehta back to SPAC following his wonderful appearance at the 2019 Wine & Food Festival. His creative and unique approach to sustainable, plant-based cooking is an important part of the ethos of CulinaryArts@SPAC,” says Elizabeth Sobol, President and CEO of Saratoga Performing Arts Center. “We are delighted that he will be back and working with local chef Michael Blake.”

The dinner will feature vegetable-forward dishes that are environmentally conscious with flavors from Chef Jehangir Mehta’s native India and Persian heritage. The exclusive menu will feature “Zero-Waste Papadums” with ingredients gleaned from the farm, a “Harvest Jewels” soup with Saratoga squash, “Smoky Japanese Eggplant Buns,” “Thai-Style Mushroom Curry” using maitake mushrooms foraged in the Adirondacks, and “Steamed Chocolate and Coffee Pudding,” accompanied by wine and beer.

“More and more of us want to cook with less or no meat and are excited to see how Mehta achieves such delicious results,” says Chef Kim Klopstock, who plans to have Mehta speak to the dining room about his dishes and philosophy. “This will be a refreshing culinary alternative as we head into Thanksgiving week to enjoy traditional American fare.”

Hailing from India, Jehangir Mehta was the chef/owner of New York City restaurants Graffiti and Graffiti Earth, (which have closed as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic), and he plans to launch an online spice shop in their name. He currently operates Me and You for private dining experiences. Mehta has been a participant in Food Network’s Next Iron Chef Redemption 2012, the runner-up at the Next Iron Chef 2009, a participant on Iron Chef American and a guest on Martha Stewart Living. Known for his signature eclectic style and food sustainability initiatives, he uses an array of unusual ingredients and spices to create an interesting juxtaposition of temperatures, textures and tastes. Chef Mehta is a frequent speaker on sustainability and a council member for “Menus for Change,” an initiative of the Culinary Institute of America, the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health and Google. 

“Fall Flavor Fusion”ispart of the Center’s CulinaryArts@SPAC initiative, which launched in the fall of 2020 and features educational classes, workshops, gourmet experiences and more to support local chefs, farmers, and the regional culinary community.

Photo: Dave Bigler Photography

Tickets to attend are $100 and include the multi-course dinner, open wine and beer, and tax and gratuities. Availability will be limited. All attendees are required to show proof of having completed their COVID-19 vaccination no sooner than 14 days prior to the event. Acceptable forms of proof include vaccination card, a photo of your vaccination card, or the Excelsior Pass. Verification will be required upon entry at the Charlie Gate adjacent to the Hall of Springs entrance. All attendees are encouraged to wear a mask when not eating or drinking. Visit spac.org for more details.   

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