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‘Foodies and the Beast:’ Live at Founding Farmers

Chefs share their specialties.

Mixologist Jon Arroyo of Founding Farmers, show hosts Nycci, David Nellis and Executive Chef Joe Goetze of Founding Farmers.

Mixologist Jon Arroyo of Founding Farmers, show hosts Nycci, David Nellis and Executive Chef Joe Goetze of Founding Farmers.

— Founding Farmers Restaurant in Park Potomac was the place to be on Sunday, May 20. The Park Potomac restaurant was the scene for “Foodie and the Beast,” the food and wine variety show hosted by Nycci and David Nellis on Federal News Radio 1500AM. The sold-out venue featured brunch, interviews with well-known chefs, a discussion with a local butcher about carving lamb, a drink-mixing lesson from Jon Arroyo, mixologist for Founding Farmers and more.

As the Nellis’ opened the show, orders for the breakfast and morning cocktails were served. Food-lovers could choose Applewood-smoked bacon and eggs with a biscuit and choice of sides, New Orleans Style French Toast, scrambled egg whites with roasted vegetables or Red Flannel Hash with goat cheese, red beets, and hash brown and poached eggs. Drink choices included a Mimosa, Bloody Mary or Bellini.

Arroyo demonstrated how to create the “Yellow Jacket” made from honey, maraschino liquor and gin, a “Caiparoska” — a Brazilian drink featuring lime, raw sugar and vodka — and several other specialty drinks, each sampled by the attendees.

Gourmets from Alexandria to Baltimore made their way to Park Potomac to catch the broadcast and pick up foodie tips from conversations with Founding Farmers’ Corporate Executive Chef Joe Goetz, Chef Jonah Kim from PABU in the Baltimore Four Seasons Hotel, Pastry Chef Chris Ford, from Wit and Wisdom and PABU, both in Baltimore, Bibiana Executive Chef Nick Stefanelli, Pam Ginsberg, known as “Pam the Butcher,” Peter Kaldes of Kaldes Brothers which imports Greek products, Maggi Castelloe, owner of the Virginia specialty foods purveyor, Hunt Country Foods and others.

Judith Worthington, who lives in the Kentlands and Venicia Holmes of Clarksburg came because Founding Farmers is one of their favorite restaurants. “I love to cook,” said Worthington. “I thought it would be fun to meet the chefs and taste the food.”

Ellen Chanin of Olney is a fan of “Pam the Butcher” from Wagshal’s Market in D.C. She said, “Pam is the consummate expert on cuts of meat. She will be talking about the ‘Lamb Jam’ cooking contest being held tomorrow at Eastern Market. We have always heard that she is the go-to person when purchasing gourmet cuts.”

Pastry Chef Chris Ford was recently named “Best New Pastry Chef of 2012” by Food and Wine Magazine. Ford explained that he learned to bake as a child with his mother — and he still finds it nostalgic and a pleasure to create unique and tasty pastries for his patrons. Chef Kim’s restaurant PABU features 90 to 100 types of sake and is “a modern izakaya” restaurant. “We cook on a robotic grill — which is a typical Japanese charcoal grill using 80 year-old charcoal.” said Kim. “The charcoal burns at 1000 degrees so the food is cooked in just seconds, searing in the flavors.”

Castelloe presented the audience with chocolates from Hunt Country Foods. Each guest was given a swag bag of special gifts from Founding Farmers and the other guests appearing on the show.