Cancelled: Dame It! 2020
Sunday, April 26, 2020
2 pm – 5 pm
Chow Girls @ Solar Arts
711 15th Ave. NE, 3rd Floor
To our Dame It! Supporters, Guests and Friends:
The impact of COVID-19 has expanded very quickly this week, as you are all aware. After careful consideration and following the recommendations put forth by the Minnesota Department of Health, the MN chapter of Les Dames d’Escoffier has decided to cancel our Dame It! 2020 fundraiser scheduled for April 26, 2020.
Although this is our most important fundraising event of the year, in the interest of being good community stewards we think it’s prudent to follow the protocols put forth by the health department to cancel larger events. We will miss the community aspect of gathering together but we hope you will continue to celebrate the spirit of Dame It! and support the women chefs, beverage leaders and artisans by going to their restaurants and purchasing their products. (See our list and links below.)
- For those of you who have already purchased tickets and would like a refund, please go to your ticket order on Eventbrite by 3/31 and click Request A Refund.
- For those of you who would like to donate your ticket cost, there is no need to do anything. We thank you for your gracious understanding and generosity. We will send a tax receipt to you.
- If you would like to make a donation, please click DONATE
Please know that all of the money donated will go towards the mission of MN LDEI including Academic Scholarships for women students in culinary, food science and agriculture fields; Micro-Grants to support working women in the food industry; and Urban Roots youth in the fields of food and ecology. We hope to continue to support those in the industry who will especially need our help in these trying times.
Thank you for your support and understanding.
Joan Donatelle, President Minnesota Les Dames d’Escoffier
Janice Cole, Dame It! Coordinator
Members of Minnesota Les Dames d’Escoffier
What We Support
Proceeds generated by Dame It! support the mission of Minnesota LDEI including:
- Urban Roots, an East Side St. Paul organization empowering youth through food & ecology.
- Academic Scholarships, supporting women students in the culinary, agricultural or food sciences fields.
- Dame It! Dollars Micro-Grants, providing support for working women in the food industry.
Can’t Attend? Please consider making a tax deductible donation!
Special thanks to our lead sponsor Chowgirls Killer Catering !
14 women chefs and restaurant owners including:
Ann Ahmed – Lat 14 and Lemon Grass
Jami Olson – Popol Vuh and Centro
Michelle Gayer (of Salty Tart fame) – Taher, Inc.
Janene Holig – Hot Indian Foods
Meet the 2020 Dame It! featured women chefs and artisans of the Twin Cities
Lat14 Asian Eatery is Chef Ann’s second restaurant, inspired by her love of food and desire to share culture. Mostly, she wants to cook the food that brings people together around the table. Lat14 Asian Eatery provides diners the opportunity to eat their way along the exciting, diverse 14th parallel – without the long airplane trip. Small, shareable plates are inspired by Ann’s connections to Laos, Thailand, Cambodia, Philippines, and their neighboring countries, bringing their flavorful cuisines, ingredients, and cultural traditions, to deliver an exceptional culinary experience.
Info. on Michelle and Taher, Inc. coming soon!
Sarah Smart Cromett
Sarah Smart Cromett of St. Paul Hotel is a Le Cordon Bleu graduate and has been the Pastry Chef at the Saint Paul hotel for over nine years. Her pastry department is responsible for producing all the desserts for the Saint Paul Grill and M St Café as well as all of the banquet events, corporate events, teas, weddings and off-site functions including the Humane society and the spring Ordway galas. She has worked with MHC culinary group doing desserts for the Starkey and United Hospital Galas. She loves working with food and the creative environment of a professional kitchen. When she’s not in the kitchen she’s enjoying gardening and preserving at home.
Chef Sara Johannes started as a theater major at the University of Minnesota before a redirection ultimately led her to culinary school. Falling in love with food at a young age, Sara was inspired by her grandparents, who always let the season, mood and occasion dictate their menu. Sara served as Executive Chef for Wolfgang Puck’s Five Sixty restaurant in Dallas and WP24 in Los Angeles at the Ritz Carlton before heading back to Minneapolis. Once back in the Midwest, Sara served as the Executive Chef of seven original concepts at the Minneapolis St. Paul Airport with OTG Management. OTG afforded her the opportunity to compete on Top Chef, Season 11 – New Orleans for Bravo TV. Currently, Sara is a Culinary Arts Instructor at her alma mater, Saint Paul College.
Mecca Bos of Eat for Equity (E4E) Catering has been working in the culinary industry for longer than she cares to discuss. E4E builds a culture of generosity through sustainable community feasts. We invite people to come together to eat, drink, give what they can, and raise thousands of dollars for other nonprofit causes. E4E is a collaborative effort; Mecca runs the kitchen, Imani Mansfield is sous chef, Sarah Black is pastry chef, Annie Byrne and Abe Levin are cooks and Emily Torgrimson is Executive director.
Heidi Andermack & Amy Brown
Heidi and Amy are co-owners of Chowgirls Killer Catering, a women-owned company with a team dedicated to taking care of each other and you, their clients. Their people are kind, detail-oriented, hard working and talented. Their service staff is thoughtful, approachable and brings spirited energy to every event. They are proud of their Chowgirls family and passionate about creating memorable moments that make their guests feel welcomed and wanted.
Kenzie Edinger is the Chef de Cuisine at Mucci’s Italian, St. Paul. After a few years in corporate kitchens, she attended Le Cordon Bleu in 2012. She began working at The Strip Club Meat and Fish and The Hastings Country Club where she eventually became the Sous Chef at 19 years old. Two years later, she was part of the opening team for Mucci’s Italian as the Sous Chef and later promoted to Chef de Cuisine. Kenzie believes in making simple, comforting food that is executed with care for the ingredients and the consumer.
Owner/General Manager of Popol Vuh and Centro. After a long stint in the film industry, Jami aligned her entrepreneurial desires with her passion for the hospitality industry. She began working in the hospitality industry at age 14, and through the years, worked behind many of the Twin Cities’ most exciting bars. During this time, she has acquired a discernible palate for spirits, wine and beer. Aside from her innate working knowledge of her craft and her highly driven personality, she is also an incredible purveyor of hospitality, which is vital to the restaurant industry.
Chef Janene Holig blends her rural Midwestern roots and passion for world travel into extraordinary flavors that have garnered her acclaim. Executive chef for Hot Indian Foods, a burgeoning fast-casual chain, throughout the metro area, Holig is also a well-known personality locally, and nationally, having appeared on the Food Network.
Growing up in the industry, she worked with her parents at a bar/resort they owned before launched into the world, backpacking around Europe. She returned home, attended The Arts Institute in Minneapolis. In a matter of months, she went from working at the annual Charlie Awards (Minneapolis’ ode to the food world) to standing on stage with her very own one of the coveted plate awards for her work with Hot Indian. Her culinary prowess and powerful leadership have made her one of the most respected and beloved chefs in the Twin Cities.
Co-owner of Chef Shack Ranch and Chef Shack Bay City, Lisa has collaborated with some of the world’s top chefs. Most recently with Daniel Humm at Taj-Campton in San Francisco. Her New York City expertise comprised the legendary Lespinasse under Gray Kunz followed by Christian Delouvrier. She also opened the Soho Grand hotel as a lead sous chef, and spent time in the kitchen of Drew Nieporent’s acclaimed Layla restaurant. Lisa also cooked abroad in London at the acclaimed L’Escargot. She is the consummate chef and educator teaching culinary inquisitives the virtues of great technique and ingredients.
Co-owner of Chef Shack Ranch and Chef Shack Bay City, Carrie is a lifelong student and adult leader of 4-H & FFA, she has a long history with small scale agriculture, cooking, and ranching livestock; in which her brand now grows half of all the produce and herbs for her restaurants. Carrie spent time in New York city at Jean-Georges company, as well as Morimoto’s flagship New York post in the pastry department. Her passions include fine cooking & baking, plant sciences, rare cars, travel, photography, and fashion. Carrie and Lisa are known as the Godmothers of food trucking, and in 2012 Yahoo News named their brand one of the “Top 10 most creative food trucks in the nation”.
Jametta Raspberry is an award-winning chef disrupting the status quo of Minnesota dining with verve, thought-provoking discussions, and anything-but-boring food for over 16 years. She’s worked in some of the most-lauded kitchens in Minneapolis and founded her very own House of Gristle that’s a popular pop-up and catering operation. She’s known for bold flavors, flawless technique, and a voracious curiosity, driven to learn and share her wealth of knowledge. Passionate about social change, she also mentors women through the Ramsey County Correctional Facility Culinary Arts program in hopes of bypassing the prison pipeline system.
Whether working one-on-one with high-profile clients to provide curated meals for home use, nutrition to boost vitality, melding with a team inside a corporate kitchen, or hosting exciting events as part of House of Gristle, she is always a valued member of any culinary team she’s a part of. Jametta was just recognized by the Charlie Awards, Minneapolis’ own food world version of the Oscars, as a Rising Star.
2020 Participating Wineries,
Distilleries and Breweries
Italian Wine Scholar, Midwest Sales Manager for Vineyard brands, Program Instructor for the Wine Professional Certificate, Saint Paul College, Owner/Instructor, Vine Lab Wine & Spirits Academy MN.
With a passion for food and wine…Nikki’s storied career includes, restaurant management, boutique wine wholesaler, wine & spirits retail management/buyer. Nikki’s full-time position is Sales Manager for Vineyard Brands, representing Minnesota, Iowa, Wisconsin, Nebraska & the Dakotas.
Nikki’s role as wine educator began in 2011 at Saint Paul College teaching the 14 week-Wine Professional Certificate program and now also runs the Globally recognized WSET & Wine Scholar Guild courses for Vine Lab Wine & Spirits Academy MN. Nikki is currently enrolled in WSET Diploma.
Take a mini wine class at Dame It! 2020 with Vine Lab Wine & Spirits Academy founders, (Dame) Nikki Erpelding & Lisa Lehar. Featuring 3 European countries, Spain, Italy & France. Sampling 3 wines per class.
Vineyard Brands’ mission is to select and offer wines of the best quality and value from the best places on Earth so that there is absolute confidence in any wine with “Imported by Vineyard Brands” on the label. As a “family” owned enterprise, we have chosen to represent only family-owned wineries. We have a wealth of experience representing both small producers and large volume brands, and represent over 60 wineries from the major wine-growing regions throughout the world. We strive to understand and respect the goals of each of our producers for their individual brands, and have a proprietary sense of pride in our brands and understanding that the only way to achieve long-term success is building a good distribution network.
Twin Spirits Distillery is the passion project of Michelle Winchester, whose curiosity for flavor and spirit of adventure found a home in the distilling community of the Twin Cities. Michelle is the first one-woman owned distillery in Minnesota and she is excited to make NE Minneapolis her distilling oasis.
Michelle started this project in 2014 and has spent two years getting the distillery up and running. From purchasing and renovating a 1920’s property in NE Minneapolis that will serve as the distillery and cocktail room, with an additional building that will house a warehouse and possible event space. Michelle loves the barn look of the building and plans on extensive green spaces to continue the look of a farm.
Supplier, Vineyard Brands, Nikki Erpelding
Distributor, The Wine Company, Patti Douglas
J. Carver Distillery, Gina Holman
Twin Spirits Distillery, Michelle Winchester
Bourget Imports, Staci Mickelson
Early Bird Tickets are on sale now through April 15, 2020. Visit Eventbrite to purchase.
Tickets sales are limited! After April 15th, ticket prices go up.
2020 Dame It! Sponsors
We would like to thank our sponsors whose support helps make possible scholarships, grants and donations to support women and youth in the culinary fields.
If you are interested in participating in, or supporting, the Dame It! event please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Space is limited for participating women-owned businesses so contact us now!
These are the individuals and their teams that “bring it” the day of Dame It!
We thank them for making Dame It possible!
Vineyard Brands is a family-owned enterprise who’s mission is to select and offer wines of the best quality and value from the best places on Earth so that there is absolute confidence in any wine with “Imported by Vineyard Brands” on the label.
Becki Melvie is owner of Abundant Kitchen, a kitchen store and cooking school with locations in Buffalo and Excelsior, MN. Trained in Ireland at the Ballymaloe Culinary School, Melvie guides culinary tours of the Emerald Isle. Her Abundant Kitchen Cookbook will be published May 2020. Becki will be teaching the 15 minute mini classes on “Tips for building a charcuterie board.”
The Wine Company – Committed to finding high quality wines and spirits; to discovering accoutrements which enhance the appreciation of these distinctive and authentic tastes.
Within the Famille Perrin range of wines you will discover the richness and different terroirs of the Southern Rhône Valley. With the same skills and the same passion as for Château de Beaucastel, the Perrin Family reveal the spirit of each terroir, its authenticity and its specificity.
Vine Lab Wine & Spirits Academy offers a wide range of classes from workshops that are ideal for enthusiasts to professional wine & spirits certification courses – we hope you join us for an approachable and educational experience!
Dangerous Man Brewing. Our mission is to be a destination tap house brewery in Minneapolis, focusing on high-quality small-batch production beers. With ever-changing taps, we are the hub for lovers of beer and those seeking everything from the traditional to the extreme in their glass. Not just a brewery, it’s something more. Good beer is fresh beer. Drink local!
Miraval. A land. A light. A soul. An inspiration. A work of art.
The Art of Rosé.
J. Carver Distillery is located in the farming heart of Carver County, Minnesota. The same spirit that led Minnesota pioneer and namesake Jonathan Carver is found at the heart of our distillery. “Spirits of Discovery” is our guiding passion.
Company info. coming soon!
Salad Girl mindfully crafts the most delicious, unique, versatile & innovative variety of freshly made, never cooked, certified organic vinaigrettes, dressings and marinades. A special “thank you” to everyone at Salad Girl for providing all of the beautiful signage throughout the event!
Twin Spirits takes a variety of ingredients as a base for a spirit, using the grain-to-glass approach that incorporates local ingredients, sustainable distilling and original recipes. Twin Spirits is meant to invoke the idea of the many dualities in life. We look forward to sharing Twin Spirits with you.
Thanks for generous donations that put the fun in Dame It!