Last night was the first in a series of four culinary events celebrating five years of Fearing's in the Ritz-Carlton Hotel. Each event will bring to town a high-profile guest chef and a dinner featuring the cuisine in which they specialize. Chef Fearing brought in Alabama's own Chris Lilly, world barbecue champ and wielder of white barbecue sauce, for this first feast.
Guests were served hors d'oeuvres, margaritas, sangria and Deep Ellum Brewing Co. beer in the outdoor area, while two huge smokers finished up their overnight meat cooking on Pearl Street.
All that smoke certainly brought the crowds. This first event was very well-attended, with well over 150 hungry Fearing's fans to feed. Tables of people inside and out feasted on tomato salad with cucumbers, watermelon and feta, field pea salad with bacon, campfire beans, charred oysters and elotes-style corn-on-the-cob.
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Then the meat emerged: pulled pork sliders with spicy mustard slaw and chicken with Alabama white barbecue sauce.
Desserts were cute as a button, also served appetizer-style by Fearing's staff:
Chocolate tarts, watermelon-lime popsicles, dreamsicle push pops and mini ice cream sandwiches. It was around this time that the outdoor space turned into, as Chef Fearing's events often do, a concert venue. Chairs spun toward a stage as Fearing and others played well into the night.
Upcoming fifth anniversary events will feature Napa Valley chef Michael Chiarello, French chef Hubert Keller and Houston chef Robert Del Grande. Each of the last smaller and more intimate dinners will cost guests a hefty $155 each, but will likely be meals to remember.