This Week's Dish: Two BBQ Competitions Showcase Homemade and Professional Dishes, Niche and Blood & Sand Team Up for Five-Course Dinner

By Heather Riske
In Food

Think your ribs are restaurant-worthy? Head out to Fields Foods on Saturday, July 26 for their Local BBQ Cook-Off, held from 11am to 5pm. In addition to a selection of homemade barbecue, they’ll also have live music from Pierce Crask, grilling tips from, raffles and games for kids. Samples from local vendors include Wenneman Meat Co., Millie’s BBQ Sauce, Match Meats, Billy Goat Chip Company, Cole’s Sweet Heat BBQ Sauce, Kraftig and more. 1500 Lafayette Ave., Lafayette Square, 314.241.3276

Photo courtesy of St. Louis Occasional Barbecue Society

Photo courtesy of St. Louis Occasional Barbecue Society

If you’d rather leave the barbecue to the professionals, the St. Louis Occasional Barbecue Society (also known as the SLOBS) will hold a charity barbecue competition on Sunday, July 27, at Keetons Double Play Sports Bar & Grill. For a $25 contribution, guests can sample ribs from competing teams including BBQ ASAP, Iron Barley, The Famous Bar, PM BBQ, Colorado Bob’s, Hendricks BBQ, Highway 61 Roadhouse, Dylan’s Sports Bar, Kilderkins and Keetons. Proceeds will be split between Lift For Life Gym and City Seniors. Rib sampling begins at 2pm, and bar service and other food will be available starting at 11am. 4944 Christy Blvd., Bevo Mill, 314.351.6000

On July 24, Niche and Blood & Sand are hosting a Farmer Collaborative Dinner at Niche to benefit Slow Food St. Louis. The five-course dinner will feature local Missouri produce from Lee and Ingrid Abraham of Berger Bluff Farms prepared by Chefs Nick Martinkovic and David Rosenfeld of Blood and Sand, and Executive Chef Nate Hereford and Chef Brian Lagerstrom of Niche. Dessert will be prepared by Pastry Chef Sarah Osborn of Niche. Cocktails are at 6:30pm, and seating begins at 7:30pm. Tickets are $85 per person. Reservations can be made by calling Niche. 7734 Forsyth Blvd., Clayton, 314.773.7755

L’Ecole Culinaire and Schlafly have partnered up for a series of beer dinners. On Thursday, July 24, they’ll serve Deconstructed Tortilla Soup, Grilled Artichoke Shrimp with Avocado Salsa and Crema Fresca, Flat Iron “Chivito” with Quail Egg and Prosciutto, Lettuce, Tomato and Creme, and Cajeta Cream with Black Bean Tuiles and Guava. Each course from the menu will be paired with a Schlafly beer. Tickets are $40, and reservations can be made on the L’Ecole website or by calling 1.866.LECOLECHEF. 9811 S. 40 Dr., Ladue, 314.587.2433

Food donations are typically down during the summer, so Operation Food Search is hosting a community-wide food drive in an effort to restock its distribution center. The 6th annual Saturday Jubilee Food Drive on July 26 will benefit the city’s largest distributor of free food for the hungry. The event runs from 9am to 4pm at 118 grocery stores throughout St. Louis, including Dierbergs Markets, Schnucks Markets, Wal-Mart stores, Straub’s Markets and more. Volunteers at each store will be on hand to greet customers and collect donations.

Local doughnut truck Vincent Van Doughnut took home top honors on the season premiere of The Cooking Channel’s “Donut Showdown,” which aired Friday, July 11. Owner Vincent Brian Marsden and pastry chef Jamie Hardesty won first place and $10,000, which Marsden says will go toward improvements to the truck.

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