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Lidia Bastianich To Serve As Fifth Annual Food Lab Conference Keynote Speaker

Nicole Barylski

"The Godmother of Italian Cooking" Lidia Bastianich. (Courtesy Photo)

"Cook, Eat, Drink: Taste the Terroir" will be the theme of the Fifth Annual Food Lab Conference at Stony Brook Southampton on Friday, September 13 and Saturday, September 14.

"An opening reception with chef prepared food and drink will begin at 6:30 p.m. on Friday, September 13 and the Conference will run through Saturday until 8 p.m.," Geoffrey Drummond, Executive Director of The Food Lab at SUNY Stony Brook/Southampton, explained. "All food and beverages, including great locally sourced lunch and grand tasting of wines, beers and spirits, are all included."

The two-day happening will feature an exciting lineup of panels, discussions and delicious tastings that highlight the top local food and drink offerings, as well as celebrity chef Lidia Bastianich in a keynote conversation with author and New Yorker contributor Adam Gopnik. The weekend will provide the chance for attendees to learn more about and experience firsthand the area's culinary variety, innovation, and local purveyors.

Conference participants will include chefs Tom Schaudel, Claudia Fleming and Nicholas Poulmentis; pastry chef and baker Carissa Waechter; Dock-to-Dish's Sean Barrett; four-time James Beard Award- winner Rozanne Gold; cookbook author, chef and former Martha Stewart Living editor Susan Spungen; Wolffer Vineyards partner and winemaker Roman Roth; East Hampton Star Food Editor Laura Donnelly; Open Minded Organics (OMO) farmer and CBD pioneer David Falkowski; Amber Waves Farm founders Katie Baldwin and Amanda Merrow; Stony Brook University Neurobiologist and Taste Expert Alfredo Fontanini; Satur Farms founder and chef Eberhard Müller; the founder of Long Island's first commercial winery, Louisa Hargrave; Saveur magazine founding editor Dorothy Kalins; and East End Food Institute Executive Director Kate Fullam, and more. 

Once again held to coincide with the harvest season, the Conference will kick-off with a Friday Cooking Class with Chef Nicholas Poulmenti from 2 to 4 p.m., followed by a "Farmer to Table" Opening Reception with bites prepared by East End Food Institute with Chef Joao Garcia from 6 to 8 p.m. In addition to sumptuous eats, the evening will feature Patty Gentry, farmer/owner and chef at Early Girl Farm in Bellport, in conversation with Dorothy Kalins, the founding editor of Saveur Magazine, as well as scenes from Emmy and James Beard Award-winning documentary filmmaker Roger Sherman's The Soul of a Farmer, which focuses on Gentry and her farm.

"There will be a special Greek themed cooking class taught by Chopped Champion Chef Nicholas Poulmentis," Drummond shared. "Of course, student will get to sample all dishes taught, and paired with special wines!"

On Saturday, sessions will begin at 9 a.m. Topics will revolve around The Science of Taste: Taste Memory and Mindful Eating, Our Coastal Cuisine—Fishing, Farming and Cooking from the Sea, Featuring "Long Island Cuisine"—Branding Our Terroir, From Farm to Pharma: Hemp Farming, Superfoods and CBD, What's Happening in Baking?—Savory and Sweet Breads and Pastries, Wines, Beers and Spirits with Edible Long Island/Edible East End, and Tastings and Talking with Our Favorite Makers.

The Keynote discussion, "The Power of Local: Taste The Terroir" with Lidia Bastianich in conversation with Adam Gopnik, will be held at 11 a.m. "The Keynote speaker, Emmy and James Beard awarded celebrity Chef Lidia Bastianich, called the Godmother of Italian Cooking (and, who happens to live in Long Island and is a beloved regular on LI Channel 13/21), will be in conversation with the New Yorker's Adam Gopnik," Drummond said.

"With Farmers and Fishers, Winemakers and Brewers, Chefs and Bakers, all committed to making great local food and drink available to Long Island," Drummond added.

Tickets for the 2019 Food Lab Conference are $150.

Stony Brook Southampton Campus is located at 39 Tuckahoe Road in Southampton. For more information, visit thefoodlab.org.

Nicole is the Editor-in-Chief of Hamptons.com where she focuses on lifestyle, nightlife, and mixology. She grew up in the Hamptons and currently resides in Water Mill. www.hamptons.com NicoleBarylski NicoleBarylski

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