Renowned Charleston Restaurateurs to Produce Visiting Chef Dinner

Published 02.20.2007

Business, Arts & Sciences

Donald Barickman, founding executive chef and vice president for Hospitality Management Group Inc.A Montour County native is among chefs from the award-winning Charleston, S.C., restaurants Magnolias Uptown Down South and Cypress Lowcountry Grille who will visit Pennsylvania College of Technology in March to work with students to produce an elegant "Visiting Chef Dinner" that raises money for scholarships.

The dinner will take place Friday, March 9, and is the culmination of the chefs' three-day stay on campus, during which School of Hospitality students have the unique opportunity to work alongside the renowned culinary-arts professionals.

It marks the second visit for Donald Barickman, founding executive chef and vice president of Hospitality Management Group Inc., to Penn College for its Visiting Chef Series.

Barickman, a Culinary Institute of America graduate, and Thomas Parsell opened Magnolias in 1990. Barickman, one of the South's most notable culinary figures, is widely recognized as a pioneer in lowcountry cuisine, bringing "uptown" flair to familiar Southern staples.

He has been a guest chef and instructor at numerous culinary programs; was a featured chef in the "Great Chefs of the South" cookbook and television series; and has been recognized by Esquire, Gourmet, Smithsonian and Southern Living magazines, the James Beard Foundation and the Food Network. Magnolias was awarded status as a Distinguished Restaurant of North America.

Craig Deihl, executive chef at Cypress Lowcountry GrilleOver the past decade, Barickman and Parsell have also opened Blossom restaurant and Magnolias Upper Level, a group-dining facility. The company?s newest venture, Cypress Lowcountry Grille, debuted in 2001.

Danville native Craig Deihl, executive chef at Cypress, graduated from Johnson and Wales University in Charleston and collaborated with Barickman to develop the restaurant's menu, which was selected by Esquire magazine as one of 2001's Best New Restaurants and was a 2006 Distinguished Restaurants of North America winner. Cypress features Diehl's love of indigenous lowcountry ingredients, accented with an Asian flair and innovative touch.

Joining Deihl and Barickman is M. Kelly Wilson, pastry chef at Cypress Lowcountry Grille. Wilson holds an associate degree in baking and pastry arts from Johnson and Wales University, as well as bachelor's degrees in English and history. Wilson fashions fresh interpretations of traditional treats and participates in a wide variety of charitable events, as well as demonstrations and teaching opportunities.

On March 7, Barickman and Deihl will offer a discussion about their cookbooks at the Madigan Library. Barickman, author of two cookbooks, will feature his 2006 book, "Magnolias Authentic Southern Cuisine." Deihl will introduce his new cookbook, "Cypress," due for release in early spring. Cookbooks will be available for sale. The event is free and is scheduled at 2 p.m. in the library's second-floor reading loft.

M. Kelly Wison, pastry chef at Cypress Lowcountry GrilleTickets for the Visiting Chef dinner, scheduled for 6:30 p.m. in the college's Le Jeune Chef Restaurant, are $125. Net proceeds will be used for annual scholarship awards and endowed scholarship funds. To reserve seats, call the Special Events Office at Penn College at (570) 320-5229.

The courses and accompanying wines for the chefs' "Lowcountry Cuisine" menu are:

Lobster "B.L.T."Butter-poached lobster with braised bacon and tomato fondueButterfield Station, Chardonnay, 2005, California

Pan-Roasted Quail Country ham, cornbread and sage stuffing; lowcountry succotash; and quail essenceChateau Frank, Celebre Sparkling Rose NV, Finger Lakes, N.Y.

Spicy Shrimp and Sausage with tasso gravy and creamy white gritsPine Ridge, Chenin Blanc/Viognier, 2004, Clarksburg, Calif.

Steak Diane Roasted mushrooms with parsnip puree and truffled cracked-peppercorn creamRubissow-Sargent, Cabernet Sauvignon, 1995, Napa Valley, Calif.

Key Lime-White Chocolate Cheesecake with house-made graham cracker, gingered blueberry compote and white chocolate sauceKoberner Weisenberg von Schleinitz, Riesling Spaetlese, 2004, Mosel-Saar-Ruwer, Germany