A nonprofit publication of the Kentucky Center for Public Service Journalism

Local chef credits team of University of Kentucky doctors for saving his life after heart failure diagnosis

By Mallory Olson University of Kentucky Matthew Varga lives his life in the kitchen – it is his passion. “I cannot imagine doing anything else,” he said. “And it’s not just cooking that I love, it’s the people, too. They are my family.” Working as a chef at Honeywood, one of Ouita Michel’s newest restaurants at The Summit at Fritz Farm, it is not unusual for Varga to log a more than...

Chef Ouita Michel to join other celebrated chefs, pitmasters to celebrate BBQ at ‘Woodford Smoke’

Chef Ouita Michel Ouita Michel, one of Kentucky’s most celebrated chefs, is teaming up with other noted chefs and pitmasters for exclusive dinner at Woodford Reserve Distillery celebrating the smokey greatness of bar-be-que. Chef Joy Crump Michel will be joined by Chef Joy Crump of Fredericksburg, Va. and her pitmaster Matt Deaton, along with pitmaster Chad Lindon of Kentucky. They will collectively...

Ouita Michel expands farm-to-table brand to include special occaisions with Holly Hill Events division

Chef and restaurateur Ouita Michel is expanding her brand of hospitality to include private catering for special occasions and corporate functions with her new Holly Hill Events division. Michel has partnered with Fasig-Tipton, the historic thoroughbred venue on Newtown Pike in Lexington, as the exclusive caterer, which together offers clients an iconic Bluegrass backdrop and exceptional cuisine and...

Woodford Reserve Distillery features Best of Kentucky Summer Dinner Series

Food and bourbon lovers can celebrate the best of both with a new summer dinner series at the historic Woodford Reserve Distillery, set amid the thoroughbred pastures of central Kentucky. The Best of Kentucky Dinner Series — held one evening in June, July, and August — will feature classic Kentucky fare with special bourbon tastings and cocktails. The events includes live music, distillery...

Kentucky chef’s Ouita Michel, Sara Bradley to bring taste of Kentucky to NYC’s James Beard House

Kentucky bursts into the culinary world as two Kentucky chefs, Ouita Michel and Sara Bradley, will bring Kentucky-rich cuisine to the distinguished James Beard House in New York City on Tuesday, February 27. For years, Kentucky has been a hidden gem of Southern fare – but now its evolving cuisine takes the national stage and proves why the culinary scene is Better in the Bluegrass. Ouita Michel “Kentucky...

Kentucky Harvest Celebration to benefit Appalachian Food Summit set for Sept. 23 at Holly Hill Inn

Bluegrass restaurateur Ouita Michel is throwing a Kentucky Harvest Celebration Sept. 23 to benefit the Appalachian Food Summit, at her flagship restaurant, the Holly Hill Inn, 426 North Winter Street in Midway. “We are celebrating Kentucky’s unique artistic culture with poetry, music and a menu that highlights Kentucky’s rich food traditions,” Michel said. Michel has invited renowned...

Midway Christian Church’s Feast of the Epiphany is Jan. 6; Chef Ouita Michel will prepare medieval menu

Midway Christian Church is celebrating the Feast of the Epiphany Wednesday, Jan. 6, with a medieval menu prepared by Chef Ouita Michel of the Holly Hill Inn in Midway. The feast will be served at the Midway University Piper Dining Hall at 6:30 p.m. The Feast of the Epiphany, which dates to the third century, today celebrates the manifestation of God in the birth of Jesus Christ and the visitation of...

EatKentucky: First leg of my ‘OuitaWorld’ tour takes me back to Midway School Bakery

  Midway School Bakery – on Chef Ouita Michel’s So Many Roads Trip – features the Bluegrass Bagel sandwich with country ham, cream cheese and homemade apple butter. (Photos by Alan Cornett)   By Alan Cornett Special to KyForward   Chef Ouita Michel issued a challenge – i.e., a great marketing promo – to kick off the fall: Visit each of her five Bluegrass area restaurants...

From ‘Plows to Plates’: UK event provides community a taste of Kentucky’s foodways

With Lexington’s food truck scene burgeoning and the “locavore” movement gaining traction statewide, what we eat and why is changing … again.   A locavore is a person who strives to eat only food that is locally produced, not moved long distances to market. (From Wikipedia) A free public event sponsored by the University of Kentucky Libraries Special Collections Research...

Food Network’s Pioneer Woman headlines sixth Kentucky Proud Incredible Food Show

Ree Drummond, Food Network’s Pioneer Woman, will sign books and present two live cooking demonstrations at the Incredible Food Show on Oct. 11 in Lexington. (Photo from Ky. Proud)   The Kentucky Proud Incredible Food Show promises to be, say organizers, well … incredible and for the sixth year in a row on Oct. 11. This year’s highlight is two live cooking presentations by Food...

Unusual food fair at Lexington Public Library aims to keep Kentucky food memories alive

Two cooking students in Campbell County demonstrate how to make an Angel Food Cake in 1934. (Photo from UK)   An unusual food fair will take place at the Lexington Public Library Central branch on Main Street all day Saturday, Nov. 2. The fair’s unusual because, instead of food, there will be photographs, audio tapes, books, a movie and speakers.   [widgets_on_pages id=”Lesley”] The...