Chef @ Home: Michael Hargrove

Posted by chaska on March 25, 2010

Currently: BVS@Home Chef and building his own restaurant dream
Most recently: Sous Chef, Jefferson Club; Executive Chef, Primo

If you were one of the lucky guests to attend our Victorian Speakeasy, you’ve had the pleasure of tasting some of Michael’s food. I was first introduced to his talent and passion when he was working for Bim Dietrich at Primo. Utilizing his love of local foods, Micahel creates simple dishes that are both elegant and rustic at the same time. When he creates a menu, he puts his whole heart into it – which is why I am thrilled to have him on board as our BVS@Home Chef.

Favorite Meal at Home: Chicken & dumplings

Favorite Snack Food: Tacos

Favorite drink/beverage: Knob Creek & water

Any wind-down habits? If it’s been a long hard day, just setting alone in a dark quiet room

Favorite place to eat – locally: Basa, Maido, 732 social, Bunzs

Are you native to Louisville? Born and raised

Favorite thing about Louisville: It’s a one horse town with a million people

Who you look up to in life: My grandfather

Who you look up to in cooking: Marco Pierre White, Albert Roux, Heston Blumenthal, Gabrielle Hamilton, April Bloomfield, Jacques Pépin, Jacques Torres, Nate Appleman


Posted in Chef @ Home, dining | Tagged: , , , , | 5 Comments »

F-N Art launches in the ‘ville!

Posted by chaska on March 5, 2010

Kenn Parks, From Madness to Release to Enlightenment

F-N Art Series Launch
THEME: Madness
The Vernon Club, 1575 Story Ave across from Hadley Pottery
$5 Cover
BVS Members are free, but must RSVP to be on the VIP list to ensure free entry

For those of you with art in your heart, the F-N Art monthly artists’ salon (minds out of the gutters, it just means Friendship and Art), offers a chance to mingle with other artists, art lovers and any one else who feels the desire to express themselves through art. The theme for the first F-N Art series is “Madness” and will be launched in March – see the connection? Clever, no? All forms of art are encouraged. And kudos must be given to my friend Carrie in Birmingham who introduced me the the F-N Art concept.

7:00 – 8:00 mingling & community art piece
8:00 – 9:00 performance pieces
9:00 – 11:00 Music by Tamara Dearing and Amanda Lucas

Vernon will also offer $1 bowling, so we will have the whole facility!

So, what is this F-N Art??

F-N Art was originally created in Birmingham, by my friend Carrie and several of her creative type friends. This isn’t about solely professional artists, but for all of us who would love to get together with other creative types and express ourselves, always over a common theme. The series launch starts with “Madness.”

Madness – what does that mean to you? For some it brings to mind sports and “March Madness,” for others it might bring to mind Alice in Wonderland and the Mad Tea Party, and even others a mental state. There are no limits. It’s up to you. Costumes as well as art are encouraged. If you don’t feel creative, feel free to bring in a piece of work created by someone else that may be inspirational to you.

I encourage all levels and all forms/mediums of art. Think of this as a modern day arts salon for sharing and mingling and finding an outlet for our creative juices. I also encourage anyone who is in Arts Therapy to use the themes with their students and encourage them to participate as well.

The flow of the evening is as follows:
7:00 – 8:00 mingling & community art piece
8:00 – 9:00 performance pieces
9:00 – 11:00 Music by Tamara Dearing and Amanda Lucas

Community Art:
BVS will provide various materials so that we can create a communal piece each month. Eventually, we hope to have a gallery setting to display work, but will always have a photo gallery at our online FB Group (in the making)

Performance Pieces:
From 8-9 we will share performance pieces, read a poem, do a short play, show your short film. All pieces are limited to no more than 10 min in length and require you to pre-register for a spot. Again, original pieces encouraged, but not required.

Starting at 9 it becomes a free for all with great music by local bands.

If I’ve missed something, let me know…
And by all means, share this event with your friends. The more the merrier.
Facebook Event invite to RSVP:

Posted in Events, F-N Art, Music, Unusual | Tagged: , , , , | 2 Comments »

Choose Your Own Adventure Supper Speakeasy

Posted by chaska on February 2, 2010

Alright, I know I get excited about most of the dinner we here at BVS put together, but this one has a special place in my heart. Not only are we collaborating once again with the mad, creative genius of Stephen Dennison, but the location is one of my top 10 dream sites in Louisville to host a dinner. You truly won’t want to miss this one! And remember, if you’re not a member, you are able to attend one Supper Speakeasy. Once you’ve attended one, you need to become a member to attend future events.

WHEN: Thursday, March 11, 5:00p*
WHERE: As always, only revealed to those who RSVP
CHEF: Stephen Dennison, of the Before and After Dinner at the Planetarium as well as the amazing French Speakeasy with Maker’s Mark
COST: $75 per person or $125 for 2 people (use code: BVS125 when paying online)
RSVP: Please call 502.287.2772 or RSVP using the button below. To avoid service charges, please call.
Buy Tickets
WHAT: All courses will offer guests a choice for their actual dish. This is an adventure in dining where not all guests will received the same meal for each course – but you DO have control over which dish you select.

Life is an adventure, the grand painting produced over time and as personal as one’s fingerprint. Whether explored across the globe or in one’s own backyard the glory of the experience should be savored, as a great meal. We will be offering a five-course meal with appertif and digestif cocktails and paired with wines. As in life, the journey is finest when shared with companions, new and old. Please join us for this next adventure in our shared culinary experience.

While the location can not yet be revealed, it is a long standing cultural and educational center for our fair city. From a dinner that surprises at every turn to the location of the event, this is one dinner you truly won’t want to miss!

1st special guest of honor announced: Specialist Troy Yocum of “Hike for our Heroes.” When Troy Yocum came home from Iraq, he had just one thing on his mind: hike 7000 miles across America while drumming to raise $5 million for Military Families. During our economic hard times one United States soldier is rallying Americans to help veterans. Starting during Thunder Over Louisville on April 17th, 2010, Iraq war veteran Troy will hike day after day for 16 months to spread the word that help is needed. With a great team backing him, he plans on drumming up support in more ways than one.

*NOTE, the timing is a little earlier on this one to provide for all the fun activities we have in store for your evening. Special guests of honor, a unique entertainment experience and a dinner like none other you have seen.

All dishes served with wine tastings.

Asiana: ‘Dim Sum’ Seafood
Bacon Wrapped Shrimp, Teriyaki Wash      OR
Shrimp-Wrapped Bacon Teriyaki
w/ Tariquet Classic Ugni Blanc/Colombard

Italia: ‘Pasta’ Vegetable
Fresh Mozzarella Ravioli Tomato Sauce        OR
Fresh Pappardelle Gardinia
w/ Di Majo Norante Sangiovese

Franconia: ‘Soup’ Terrine
Lobster Bisque with Asparagus/ Red Pepper    OR
Asparagus/ R Pepper Bisque w/Lobster
w/Miracle One Chardonnay

Germania: ‘Meat’ Beef
Potato and Cheddar Rouladen    OR
Cheddar Schpaetzle w/ Tournedos
w/Miracle One Pinot Noir

Americana: ‘Sweets’ Dessert
Lemon Roll-up (Vanilla Sponge Cake) Strawberry Sauce       OR
Strawberry Roll-up (Choc Sponge) Lemon Sauce
w/Jonesy Port

Posted in dining, Events, Members, Supper Speakeasy | Tagged: , , , , , | 2 Comments »

Wine & Wisdom – Flamenco Dinner at La Catalana

Posted by chaska on January 26, 2010

Our first Wine & Wisdom of the year finds us visiting and enjoying the delightful new Spanish restaurant, La Catalana. If you haven’t discovered this little gem yet (next door to Havana Rumba) you really should consider joining us for an evening of food, fun and flamenco.

The purpose of the Wine & Wisdom is to elevate the traditional wine dinner to the next level and create a full cultural and/or educational experience where the food and drink are more of  an enhancement versus the focus of the overall event.

WHEN: Friday, February 12 6:30pm
WHERE: La Catalana Restaurant, next door to Havana Rumba
COST: $35 + tip for BVS members, $45 + tip for non-members*
*if you join that evening, the $10 event fee will be applied toward your membership fee
Call 502.287.2772 or email for RSVP You may also purchase through the button below which will include a small service charge. BVS members should contact me directly.
Buy Tickets
Our evening starts with a conversation with Domino, the owner of La Catalana and will cover the dining traditions of northern Spain. At 7:00, we’ll take over the front of the restaurant for a VIP view of Flamenco Louisville’s performance all while enjoying a delicious dinner of tapas, paella, sangria and more. If you speak Spanish, or have been wanting to practice, this is the evening for you as most of our delightful hosts are all native speakers!


Huevos rellenos (stuffed eggs with tuna)
Tortilla de Patatas (Potato tortilla/omlette)
Mejillones Tigres (Tiger Mussels)
Berejena a la Parmesana (eggplant parmesan – some of the best I’ve ever had and I’m not a huge eggplant lover!)

Main Course:
Traditional Paella
Black Rice with seafood

Peras al Vino (Pears in Wine)

Pitchers of Sangria and non alcoholic drinks included
Additional wines and cocktails available with special pricing for our event

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2010 Teasers…

Posted by chaska on January 26, 2010

Oh yeah, baby…you’ll definitely want to be reading our newsletter (if you’re not on it, you should sign up now)  to keep up with all the fantastic events and opportunities we have planned this year – from new partnerships, to new series and some seriously unique “one-off” events – well, there’s a ton of fun to be had! Take a peek:

F-N Art

For those of you with art in your heart, the F-N Art quarterly event (minds out of the gutters, it just means Friendship and Art), offers a chance to mingle with other artists, art lovers and any one else who feels the desire to express themselves through art.  The theme for the first F-N Art series is “Madness” and will be launched in March – see the connection? Clever, no? All forms of art are encouraged. And kudos must be given to my friend Carrie in Birmingham who introduced me the the F-N Art concept.

Fleur de LIVE

Have you ever wanted to ask a musician a question but were afraid to hear yourself on the radio? Have you been to a live gig, heard a great song and wondered where the artist’s inspiration came from?  The Fleur De LIVE event will offer you a chance to see, hear and have a dialogue with local artists in an intimate, unplugged venue that encourages interaction and participation. Series debuts in July.


Think Gallery Hop but with live performances. The return of the Theatre Hop happens in May this year. Our 2nd (nearly) annual event features theatre companies from around the city giving short performances in non-traditional venues. Hop from gallery to bar to restaurant for a 2 hr revolving show clock and finish the evening with a late happy hour and cast party where you can meet the performers.


While we can’t reveal all the details just yet, I am excited to announce that BVS and LEO have joined forces to offer some spectacular events and experiential advertising options in celebration of LEO’s 20th Anniversary this year. Details to be revealed soon!

Many of you know my fascination and enjoyment experimenting with Miracle Fruit, but you may not realize my interest in exploring the health benefits (obesity, diabetes, chemotherapy patients) of the berries/tablets as well. With these life enhancing properties in mind, BVS has partnered with mberry, a company based in AZ, who is very proactive in spreading the word on this intriguing fruit. Starting now, subscribers to BVS newsletter are able to purchase through the mberry site and receive a discount of 15% and free shipping. Discount code to be sent in the upcoming newsletter.

Posted in Announcements, Info | Tagged: , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Supper Speakeasy to feature Cancer fighting and preventing foods

Posted by chaska on January 15, 2010

WHEN: Saturday, January 30, 6:30p
WHERE: As always, only revealed to those who RSVP
CHEF: Alison Mann, most recently sous chef to Chef Curtis Stone of TLC’s “Take Home Chef
COST: $75 per person
RSVP: You may either call 502.287.2772 or click on the button below to purchase online. Service charges will apply to online purchases.
Buy Tickets
WHAT: All courses focusing on foods to assist in the fight against cancer or assist in prevention! Plus, enjoy the opportunity to hear directly from Kinsey Morrison, 13 yr old cancer survivor recently seen in the Courier-Journal here. More details to develop. Stay tuned. Proceeds to help benefit Gilda’s Club of Louisville.

Enjoy this amazing menu prepared by Chef Alison Mann, while also learning about the benefits of certain foods for fighting and preventing cancer. Alison is a certified nutritionist, and while our menu is not meant as a prescription, we are looking forward to all aspects of healthy living and the nutritional benefits of several foods. This is a first in a quarterly series this year of healthy lifestyle Supper Speakeasys. As always, all courses are paired with wine provided by Bryant Distributing.

Caramelized  onion tart with ricotta, gruyere and arugula garnish

Asparagus Veloute

Tomato Tartare salad with roasted garlic, basil oil and micro greens…possibly bay scallops bound by a chive

Pan-seared whitefish over artichoke puree, tomato lobster buerre blanc and steamed spinach

Blueberry creme brulee with rosemary lemon curd ice cream

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Amanda Lucas and Nick Hardesty finish the 2009 2nd Sunday Schedule

Posted by chaska on December 11, 2009

artwork by Jennifer Christy-Penney

I’m excited to announce our next artists in the musical series, Second Sunday Serenades, which will take place – you guessed it – on the 2nd Sunday of every month. Enjoy a relaxing afternoon of acoustic music and conversation with the artist in an intimate setting. If you remember the days of MTV’s Unplugged, this is my attempt to capture some of the fun and closeness of that series – Louisville Style. You may hear jazz, punk, folk, rock… it’s all possible! Admission is on a sliding scale to accommodate all pocketbooks and this is a non-alcoholic and child friendly venue – provided you have a child who is interested in learning and listening.

ARTISTS: Amanda Lucas and Nick Hardesty
STYLE: Pop/Rock/Acoustic
TIME: 2:00-4:00pm
COVER: $5-15, sliding scale. The more you pay the more the artist makes.
A limited menu will be available.

Space is limited, so be sure to RSVP to have your name on the list.

Artists to look forward to:
Jan – Troubadours of Divine Bliss
Feb – Sarah Elizabeth Burkey
Mar – Butch Rice

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Campo Negro/Finca el Reposo Argentinian Wine Dinner

Posted by chaska on December 10, 2009

Join Tim Stratman of Vanguard wines for a fabulous Argentinian tasting from the Campo Negro and Finca el Reposo portfolios, including the difficult to find Saint Jeannet. Four-course menu will be delightfully prepared by 60 West Bistro in St. Matthews and all wines will be available for purchase and pre-order through 4 Flights Wine Boutique in Norton Commons.

WHAT: Four Course menu tasting with Wine
WHEN: Monday, December 14, 7:00pm
WHERE: 60 West Bistro, St. Matthews, 3939 Shelbyville Rd (by Burdorf’s, the old Bacons for Louisville folks)
COST: $45 + tax and gratuity (this is not a BVS event, so no member pricing)
RSVP: Call the restaurant to reserve your space – (502) 719-9717

Saint Jeannet
Ahi Sashimi with Fresh Gari (Marinated Ginger), Daikon Radish, Shoyu Sauce aside Anise Scented Napa Cabbage Slaw

FR Malbec
Ground Brisket and Black Bean Chili served over a Grilled Rosemary Potato Wedge with Roasted Corn Salsa

CN Malbec
Blackened Bone-in center cut Pork Chop with Rich Mole’ served over Roasted Beet Salad, Sautéed Baby Bok Choy, Toasted Sesame Seeds, and Caramelized Red Onion

Blackberry Mousse with Espresso Creme

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‘Locavore’ Nibble & Sip is back!

Posted by chaska on November 7, 2009

fall-festivalIt’s finally back! We’re up and running with our first Nibble & Sip of the year and it has returned full force. Join us for our ‘Locavore’ Happy Hour at Browning’s at Slugger Field on Wednesday, Nov. 11 between 5:30 and 7:30 pm.

Groove to Butch Rice, be dazzled by Darshwood the Conjuror and enjoy special light bites and drinks that utilize locally sourced ingredients – featuring the fun of pumpkin as we celebrate fall. Show your support for all things local and the CFA.

Sliding scale cover ($5-10 suggested) and members get their first feature cocktail or mocktail free. Featuring Horseshoe Bend Wines, Effen Vodka and Maker’s Mark.

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It’s a Wonderful Wine & Wisdom Dinner

Posted by chaska on November 7, 2009

wonderful_life_GI_awardAnother favorite is back in full force! This time, we’re giving you a preview of our fabulous mobile wine tastings that have been created by Tom Johnson of Louisville Juice. Join us Monday, November 16, 7pm at L & N Wine Bar and Bistro to enjoy a wine tasting with a twist! Learn about wine through the eyes of a beloved holiday classic and delicious dishes by Chef Rick Adams.

MEMBERS: $35 + gratuity (call for promo code if you purchase online)
GENERAL PUBLIC: $55 + gratuity
Call 502.287.2772 or email for RSVP You may also purchase through the button below which will include a small service charge. BVS members should contact me directly.
Seating is limited to 24 for this event
Buy Tickets

1st course
Three – 1 oz. servings of today’s artisanal cheese selection. Traditional accompaniments.
Served with the Grecco di Tufo & Furst Riesling.

2nd course
Seared Sweetbreads, Capriole Farms goat cheese grits, Benton Farms bacon & whole grain mustard veal reduction, micro greens.
Served with the Protocolo Tempranillo.

3rd course
Duncan Farms Rabbit, swiss chard, celery root puree, bourbon pepper rabbit stock reduction.
Served with Plungerhead Zinfandel & Chono Cabernet

4th course
Classic Crème Brulee
Served with the Ivy Blondia Moscato

Posted in Charity, dining, Events, Wine & Wisdom | Tagged: , , , , , | 1 Comment »