The Ritz-Carlton New Orleans (921 Canal St.) is going higher profile than usual this weekend for a cause. Le Celebration Culinaire Internationale is a food-packed benefit for The Cystic Fibrosis Foundation. Events begin on Friday evening with a spread put out by local chefs Rene Bajeux, John Besh, Susan Spicer, Tenney Flynn, Eric Branger, Paul Prudhomme, Bingo Starr and Thomas Wolfe. After lunch at a New Orleans hotspot on Saturday, April 6, the evening brings an incredible lineup of internationally renowned chefs rarely seen in the same room. They include Joachim Splichal of Patina in Los Angeles, J. Joho of Everest in Chicago, and our own Frank Brunacci of Victor's. A champagne jazz brunch on Sunday wraps it up. Packages begin at $2250; all include lodging. Call 524-1331 or the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation at 800-FIGHT CF.
Home Field Advantage
This weekend's 48th Annual New Orleans Home & Garden Show at the Superdome is another excuse to showcase our local talent. Look for Chef Fest 2002, sponsored by The Louisiana Gas Association. Chefs are slated to perform one-hour cooking demonstrations throughout the weekend in a kitchen outfitted with the latest natural gas-powered cooking equipment.
Joining Chef Steve Zucker and the new Marigny Brasserie (640 Frenchmen St., 945-4491) along the expanding Frenchmen Street restaurant row, the former chef at Rock-N-Sake (823 Fulton St., 581-7253) has opened Wasabi (900 Frenchmen St., 943-9433). Chef Phat Nguy is serving noodle bowls, soups and sushi until 2 a.m. on Fridays and Saturdays and 10 p.m. every other night at his new 50-seater digs at the corner of Frenchmen and Burgundy, across from The John.
Marisol (437 Esplanade Ave., 943-1912) will fete Africa at a five-course wine dinner on Wednesday, April 10. Pickled fish and yam cakes with Kumkani Sauvignon Blance, doro wat of spring chicken with Simonsig Pinotage and apricot-wrapped leg of lamb with Le Riche Cabernet Sauvignon are all in Chef Peter Vasquez's plans. The dinner costs $85 per person; call for reservations.
Catch Palace Cafe (605 Canal St., 523-1661) Chef Gus Martin demonstrating a recipe from the restaurant's new cookbook at Tuesday's Crescent City Farmer's Market. On Saturday, Houma Indian Grayhawk Perkins and his wife, Annette, will sample fry bread, their Jazz Fest specialty. The Tuesday market is at 200 Broadway St. and runs from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. The Saturday market is at 700 Magazine St. and runs from 8 a.m. to noon. The Thursday market is at 3700 Orleans Ave. and runs from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. Call 861-5898 or visit www.loyola.edu/ccfm.